How can a diabetic foot ulcer be prevented?

Q: How can a diabetic foot ulcer be prevented?
A: A diabetic foot ulcer can be prevented in a number of ways. First and foremost, it is essential that you take control of your diabetes: ensure that your blood sugar is properly managed and you are eating properly. Using medication or insulin is not enough to control your diabetes. Diet and exercise is essential.

There are certain other risk factors that contribute to the formation of diabetic foot ulcers. Foot deformities, such as bunions and hammertoes, and the formation of calluses beneath the foot in areas of pressure can cause the skin to break down and form ulcers. In these cases diabetic shoes, or even custom shoes, are helpful in reducing pressure and protecting the foot. In cases of extreme deformity of the foot, such as charcot, a brace known as an Ankle-foot orthotic is useful in preventing breakdown of the skin.

Everyone who is living with diabetes must have a relationship with a podiatrist to properly assess the risk of developing a diabetic foot ulcer and recommend measures to prevent one from ever occurring.