Diabetes can cause a variety of foot problems, including dry skin. When your blood sugar levels are high, your body loses fluid which results in dry skin. Dry skin can also occur in diabetic patients due to neuropathy because the nerves are unable to send signals to the legs and feet that they need to sweat. Not being able to sweat makes your skin dry. There are ways to keep your skin soft and moist, so dryness doesn’t turn into a problem.

Caring for Dry Skin

When you have diabetes, foot care is an essential part of managing your condition. Without proper care, many foot issues can develop and turn into serious complications. Dry skin can be a problem if the skin begins to crack, especially on the heels of the feet. If the cracks are deep and bleeding, contact with germs can lead to an infection. Excessive scratching can cause breaks in the skin making it susceptible to infection, also. Diabetes and dry skin

If you develop dry skin on your feet, there are many things that can help. These include:

  • Daily checks of your feet. You should check your feet daily for cracks, fissures, sores, and any signs of an infection.
  • Wash and dry. Wash your feet daily with warm water and a mild soap. Pay close attention to dry your feet and toes thoroughly after bathing. Never soak your feet or use hot water because it can dry out the skin and worsen any cracks.
  • Moisturize your feet. You can use a moisturizer on your feet each morning and night to help combat dryness and prevent cracks and sores. Do not apply moisturizer in between your toes.
  • Use a pumice stone. You can gently file away any areas of thickened skin or calluses using a pumice stone. This works best right after a bath or shower when the skin is soft. Never attempt to shave or cut away areas of dry skin.
  • Drink more water. Diabetes can make you prone to dehydration. Drinking more water each day can keep you hydrated and help prevent dry skin.

When to See a Podiatrist

Not only should you see a podiatrist regularly if you have diabetes, you should contact your podiatrist immediately if you are experiencing symptoms such as:

  • Sores from dry skin that aren’t healing or are healing slowly
  • Deep cracks or fissures on the heels of the feet that are bleeding or sore
  • Signs of infection such as staining on your socks, a foul odor, or noticeable redness and swelling
  • Changes in skin color or temperature
  • Pain in the legs or feet

If you are diabetic and have concerns about dry skin on your feet, contact the skilled team at Alliance Foot & Ankle Specialists for an evaluation. To schedule an appointment in our Grapevine or Keller office, fill out our online contact form, or call our office today.

 

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