Over 1 in 10 Americans have diabetes. Another 88 million identified as pre-diabetic. The good news is that the number of new cases is going down. That’s due in part to people knowing more about the disease and detecting and preventing it. Diabetes can have devasting consequences for your feet, and at Patrick Fettinger, DPM, we want to raise awareness with our Fairfield County patients about signs that may indicate diabetes. Below are symptoms to be aware of:
- Changes in sensation—diabetes can cause nerve damage or neuropathy which may take the form of numbness, tingling, burning, or a loss of sensation in your feet.
- Dry, cracked skin, especially around the heels.
- Sores or cuts on the feet that seem to be taking a long time to heal.
- Discoloration of the skin
- Leg pain
- Bleeding calluses or corns
- Ingrown and fungal toenails
Of course, many of these symptoms can have other causes besides diabetes. That’s why it’s essential to report any unusual changes to our podiatrist, Dr. Patrick J. Fettinger. You can make an appointment at our New Fairfield (203-746-9660) or Middlebury (203-598-0357) office for an evaluation.
Regularly inspecting your feet is important for being able to spot the early signs of diabetes. Other lifestyle habits will help lower your risk for this disease. These include:
Maintaining a healthy weight—patients who are overweight are more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes. Excessive amounts of sugar in your diet will contribute to weight gain and diabetes risk. Be sure to read the labels on the foods you buy. Any ingredients that end in “ose” are a form of sugar. Many products that you wouldn’t suspect, such as spaghetti sauce, may contain added sugars.
Exercising regularly—regular exercise will help you keep your weight in check. It also is a great way to improve circulation, an important tool in fighting diabetes and other conditions that can impact your lower extremities.
If you have additional questions about your risk for diabetes and what you can do to prevent this disease, contact us today, New Fairfield 203-746-9660 or Middlebury 203-598-0357.