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Posts for category: Diabetic Foot Care

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
January 16, 2019
Category: Diabetic Foot Care

Are you one of 29 million Americans that have diabetes? If so, all of us at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want you to know that you have significant power in controlling this disease and how it affects your feet. Diabetes deals your feet a double blow: first, it can cause neuropathy or nerve damage to the feet which makes it difficult to detect cuts or injuries to the feet. Second, diabetes can impede circulation which restricts the flow of oxygen-rich blood that can speed healing to the extremities.

There are steps you can take, however, to help protect your feet if you have diabetes:

  • Keep your sugar levels under control. Following all your doctor’s instructions for managing your diabetes will lower your risk for complications significantly.
  • Get in the habit of doing self-exams. Check your feet daily for cuts, open sores, blisters, swelling, bruising, changes in skin color or nail condition. Report anything unusual to our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah so that they can examine your feet and adjust your treatment accordingly.
  • Choose shoes wisely. Get your foot professionally measured and choose shoes that have a roomy toe box and are made out of soft, flexible materials. Look over your feet for red marks, blisters or other signs of friction from your footwear.
  • Keep feet dry. Wear socks made of moisture-wicking materials that help feet stay dry. Change socks as soon as your feet feel damp. If you tend to sweat profusely, use an anti-fungal foot powder before putting on socks.
  • Avoid going barefoot. Even at home, bare feet are more likely to sustain a puncture wound or cut from stepping on a sharp object. Your risk for athlete’s foot or fungal infections decreases if you keep your feet covered when walking in public places.
  • Don’t practice “bathroom surgery.” Attempting to remove warts, corns or calluses or dig out ingrown toenails is likely to result in injury and infection which could pose a significant medical threat.
  • Schedule regular podiatric checkups. Your foot doctor is your partner in managing your diabetes. If you have questions about your feet and diabetes, contact our New Jersey locations in Edison, Monroe, Linden or Monmouth Junction by calling: 732-662-3050.
By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
November 06, 2018
Category: Diabetic Foot Care
Tags: Diabetes   calluses   corns   warts   ingrown toenails  

At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we know that our patients with diabetes are at increased risk for dangerous foot issues. That’s because the disease delivers a one, two punch. Neuropathy makes it difficult to detect foot problems and injuries in the first place so that often, by the time they are discovered, they are at an advanced stage. Then poor circulation impedes the healing process, causing even commonplace conditions such as ingrown toenails to become a potentially serious problem.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways to reduce your risk. Below are simple tips for preventing foot problems if you have diabetes:

  1. Trim toenails straight across. Don’t cut the corners and avoid round edges.
  2. Keep feet dry at all times. If you sweat profusely, change socks throughout the day if necessary.
  3. Wash feet daily with warm water and mild soap.
  4. Dry between your toes.
  5. No bathroom surgery! Do not attempt to dig out ingrown nails or trim calluses, corns or warts with sharp instruments.
  6. Keep feet warm.
  7. Don’t put your feet on radiators or directly in front of a fireplace or woodstove.
  8. Don’t smoke—it impedes circulation.
  9. Keep feet moisturized. Apply a good quality lotion to your feet daily but avoid the area between your toes.
  10. Do not wear socks with tight elastic tops.
  11. Choose shoes that have roomy toe boxes and keep heels to a height of 2 inches or less.
  12. Wear loose socks to bed.
  13. Inspect your feet daily. Look for cuts, bruises and swelling. Report any unusual changes in color, shape or appearance of skin or toes to our podiatrists, Dr. Ben Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah immediately.
  14. Keep your blood sugar under control and follow all of your doctor’s instructions for managing your diabetes.

If you have additional questions about diabetes and your feet, contact our podiatry offices in Edison, Monroe, Monmouth Junction or Linden, New Jersey by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
December 12, 2017
Category: Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetic patients always have to take special care of their feet, but at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, we know that this time of the year brings some particular challenges that we want to remind our patients about. Colder weather and the holiday season can increase potential risks for patients with diabetes. Here are some do’s and don’ts to help keep your season merry and bright:

Don’t: be tempted to skip your regularly scheduled podiatric appointments. All the extra activity of the holiday season may mean less time but it also means more stress on your feet and that’s why monitoring your feet is even more important.

Do: be diligent about using a rich moisturizer on your feet and heels. As thermostats get turned up, the air and consequently our skin gets much drier. Avoid heel fissures and cracks caused by dry skin with extra applications of cream or lotion.

Do: keep feet dry. Feet that sit in damp socks allow bacteria to grow and increase the risk of fungal toenail infections and athlete’s foot. Change socks more than once a day if you sweat profusely. If snow or rain has seeped in through your shoes or boots, remove them as soon as possible and dry your feet completely, particularly between your toes.

Don’t: apply direct heat to your feet. Avoid heating pads and electric blankets. Neuropathy can make it difficult to detect when the temperature is too high and may result in burns.

Do: pay attention to where you are walking. Between slippery conditions from wintery weather and too many items on your mind, it’s easy to miss a curb or not see an icy patch on the sidewalk. Slips and falls can cause injuries that can lead to serious complications for diabetic patients. Limit the number of packages you carry at one time as well because this can prevent you from seeing what’s in front of you.

Don’t: put off contacting our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office in New Jersey if you detect any unusual symptoms in your feet. Our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah will want to be informed immediately of any changes in your feet so they can be checked in order to head off potential wounds or ulcers. Call us at: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
November 15, 2017
Category: Diabetic Foot Care

November is National Diabetes Month and here at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we partner with many patients who have this disease to help manage it and protect the health of their feet. Since neuropathy, or loss of sensation, and reduced circulatory and immune system function are all associated with diabetes, our diabetic patients have elevated risks for foot issues. What might be minor or common conditions for other patients—blisters, bunions, athlete’s foot—can pose a major potential threat to diabetic patients. Wounds and infections can be slow and difficult to heal and lead to serious consequences, even amputation. Thankfully, our foot and ankle doctors, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, can help patients with regular podiatric care to prevent wounds and maintain the health of their feet.

Preventing Diabetes

According to the American Diabetes Association, approximately 30 million Americans over the age of 18 have diabetes. Even more startling, a little over 84 million are believed to be pre-diabetic. Your physician can determine if you fall into this category. There are ways that all patients can lower their risk of diabetes. These include:

  • Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight increases your risk of Type 2 diabetes as well as heart disease and stroke. Even losing 10-15 pounds can significantly reduce your risk. Start by cutting back on calories (swap veggies and hummus or whole grain snacks for chips, replace a starch with a salad, etc.).  Weigh yourself at least once a week. Increase the amount of water you drink—it can help you feel full.
  • Don’t smoke. Smoking, in addition to raising your chances of developing diabetes, also impedes circulation, which is a contributing factor to diabetic complications.
  • Stay active. Exercise has multiple benefits: it helps prevent diabetes, increases circulation, helps your joints stay flexible and strengthens muscles, bones and your heart. You don’t have to run a marathon! Incorporate a walk during lunch hour. If you have a desk job, set a timer to get up every 30 minutes to stretch and take a quick walk around the office. Park a little further away from stores and your office. Consider adding strength training with weights, stretches and some aerobic sessions as you progress.

Start small. Little changes are more likely to be successful. If you have additional questions about diabetes and the health of your feet, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office in New Jersey by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
April 20, 2017
Category: Diabetic Foot Care
Tags: Untagged

At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we know that for our patients that have diabetes one of the most important goals of foot health care is avoiding ulcers and wounds. Fortunately there are a number of actions you can take that will make you significantly less prone to developing an ulcer which can be slow to heal and lead to serious health consequences:

  • Improve your circulation. Good circulation helps healing of minor injuries. Don’t sit for long periods with your legs crossed. Be sure to get up and stretch at regular intervals if you are doing something that requires you to be seated for long stretches. Also, don’t smoke. Smoking is damaging to your circulation.
  • Stay vigilant. Check your feet daily for changes. If you notice any difference in temperature, skin color, size/shape of the foot or if you see bruising, bumps, or swelling be sure to notify your podiatrist.
  • Partner with your doctors. Our foot and ankle surgeons, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah will help you develop a care regimen for the health of your feet. Regular appointments will allow for careful monitoring of foot conditions and potential issues that could result in foot ulcers. Following your physician’s treatment plan for keeping your sugar under control and managing all aspects of diabetes is one of the most important steps diabetic patients can take.
  • Choose shoes wisely. Shoes that are too tight or high heels that force toes to be squeezed together and pushed into the front of the shoe can create pressure points on the foot. The areas receiving excessive pressure may start to form a callus or corn. Feel around the inside of your shoes before putting them on. Loose stitching or rough patches of fabric can cause friction rubbing against the skin on your foot and create a blister.
  • Don’t walk around barefoot. Athlete’s foot and other fungal infections are transmitted by direct contact. You will also be protecting your foot from stepping on sharp objects that can cut or puncture skin.

You can take control of your foot health if you have diabetes. To learn more, make an appointment at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office at your earliest convenience by calling: 732-662-3050.