Test Your Diabetes Knowledge
November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. At Paul S. DeMarco, DPM we treat many patients with this disease, which can have a big impact on the health of your feet (as well as the rest of your body). Today, over 30 million Americans have diabetes. What you know can help you or a loved one avoid serious health consequences and continue to live an active and healthy life.
See how you do on the true/false statements below:
Diabetic patients are on the same podiatric checkup schedule as all other patients.
FALSE: Diabetes has several conditions associated with it that put your feet at risk. An inability to perceive sensations such as pain, heat, cold—known as neuropathy—as well as decreased circulation and immune system function mean that wounds and open sores or ulcers can be very dangerous. Your feet are the part of your body farthest from the heart and therefore the hardest to reach in the circulatory system. This means your body has a harder time healing wounds and infections in that area. It’s important for our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco, to closely monitor your feet if you have diabetes. A regular and more frequent checkup schedule than a non-diabetic patient should be part of a diabetic health care plan.
Patients with diabetes should take extra care when choosing shoes.
TRUE: Shoes plays a key role in the health of all our patients but those with diabetes need to be extra vigilant about their choice of footwear. Shoes should have wide toe boxes to prevent squeezing toes together, which can increase the risk for bunions, hammertoes and the accompanying corns and calluses as well as ingrown toenails. Keep heels low to reduce the risk of falls and sprains. Check the inside of the shoe for loose stitching and rough patches which can rub on the skin and cause irritation.
Diabetes is contagious.
FALSE: You cannot catch diabetes from another person. Type 2 diabetes is thought to have a genetic component. Other risk factors include being overweight, age and ethnicity.
If you have diabetes you need to eat a special diet.
TRUE & FALSE: That depends on how you define special diet. People with diabetes should eat what is considered to be a healthy diet for most people: one that is low in saturated and trans fat, high in protein and contains plenty of non-starchy vegetables, whole grains and fruit. Carbohydrates can be eaten in small portions and sweets should be reserved for special occasions.
Your podiatrist can help you monitor and keep diabetes under control.
TRUE: The foot doctor can detect changes in your disease through your feet and can also advise you on many ways to protect your feet, which in turn reduces serious health risks associated with diabetes. If you have questions or concerns about diabetes and your feet, contact our Somers Point office by calling: (609) 927-4894.