The Diabetic Bible (Care of the Diabetic Foot)

Do not smoke.

Inspect the feet daily for any breaks in the skin such as blisters, cuts and scratches. the use of a mirror can aid in seeing the bottom of the feet. Always check between the toes. Check before you start your day and prior to retiring for the evening.

Wash feet daily. Dry carefully, especially between the toes. Do not rub vigorously.

Avoid extremes of temperatures. Test bath water with hand, elbow or thermometer before bathing.

If feet feel cold at night, wear socks. Do not apply hot water bottles or heating pads. Do not use an electric blanket. Do not soak feet in hot water.

Do not walk on hot surfaces such as sandy beaches or cement around swimming pools.

Do not walk barefoot either outside or indoors.

Do not use chemical agents for removal of corns or calluses, corn plasters, or strong antiseptic solutions.

Do not use adhesive tape on the feet.

Inspect the inside of shoes daily for foreign objects, nail points, torn linings and rough areas.

If your vision is impaired, have a family member inspect feet daily.

Do not soak feet.

For dry feet, use a very thick coat of lubricating oil or cream, such as Lac-hydrin or other lanolin-containing product. Apply this after bathing and drying the feet. Do not put the oil or cream between the toes. Consult your physician for detailed instructions. Stay away from products which have alcohol in that it will dry the skin

Wear properly fitting stockings. Do not wear mended stockings or stockings with seams. Change stockings daily.

Do not wear garters.

Shoes should be comfortable at time of purchase. Do not depend on them to stretch out. Shoes should be made of leather. Purchase shoes late in the afternoon when feet are the largest. If you have vascular disease, neuropathy, or foot deformities such as bunions or hammertoes, running or special walking shoes are recommended after checking with your physician. Purchase shoes from a shoe salesman who understands diabetic foot problems.

Do not wear shoes without stockings.

Do not wear sandals with thongs between the toes.

In winter time, take special precautions. Wear wool socks and protective foot gear such as fleece-lined boots.

Nails should be cut only after clearance from your doctor and/or podiatrist that it is safe to do so. Cut the nails straight across and do not dig down the sides.

Do not cut corns and calluses. A pumice stone or emery board can be used only after clearance from your doctor and/or podiatrist that it is safe to do so.

See your physician regularly and be sure that your feet are examined at each visit.

Notify your physician or podiatrist at once should you develop a blister or sore on your feet.

Be sure to inform your podiatrist that you are diabetic.