Diabetes is a medical condition in which the body is not able to properly breakdown sugar. Of nearly 18 million diabetics in America, it is estimated that nearly 15 will eventually develop foot ulcers, a condition in which the wounds take a long time to heal. The inability of the wounds to heal may have disastrous consequences for diabetics.
Causes of Foot Ulcers
One of the reasons why wounds do not get healed or heal very slowly in diabetes patients is the impaired immune system. Foot ulcers may be caused due to inability to feel pain, deformities, poor circulation, trauma, and irritation. When the immune system in the body is impaired, the body cannot fight against infections.
When the immune system is impaired due to diabetes, even simple wounds that should normally heal within days can continue to fester for long. In foot ulcers, pain is usually not felt. You may find your socks wet. In addition, redness and swelling may be seen. In some cases, apart from foot ulcers, other infections are also caused like osteomyelitis or bone infection, sepsis and gangrene, when left untreated.
Diagnosis and Treatment
There are several measures that can be taken to improve healing. It is important to control the blood sugar level. Measures like eating a healthy diet with sufficient nutrients will help control sugar along with enhanced vitamins and nutrients to help healing. Other measures include off loading, debridement, and medication. The advice of a registered dietician may be of great help.
It is best to watch your body and monitor the slightest appearance of wounds. Keep your eyes open to infections and get medical help on slightest suspicion of an infection. In case of infection, do not put pressure on the wound to help in healing. Regular aerobic exercises will not only help control blood glucose level but will also help wounds heal.