People with diabetes are at special risk for developing foot problems. Left untreated or poorly treated, a minor foot problem can turn into a major health issue requiring hospitalization or even amputation. A qualified home caregiver can help reduce this risk.
Diabetes can damage the nerves and blood vessels, especially in the feet. Nerve damage can cause the feet to become less sensitive and thus at greater risk for injury. Damage to the blood vessels causes poor circulation that leads to poor healing. Many people with diabetes develop ulcers, or sore spots, that are prone to infection and slow to heal. Proper foot care with the help of a trained professional reduces the potential for nerve and circulatory damage, which leads to permanent problems.
In-home care providers help keep diabetes in check. These professionals assist with blood glucose monitoring. The best homecare agencies also assist with grocery shopping and preparing meals that help those with diabetes keep blood sugar levels within the target range.
Homecare service providers help people with diabetes check their feet for signs of trouble. Caregivers can look for red spots, blisters, cuts, and swelling on the bottom of the feet, in places the client may not be able to see. Home caregivers should perform these checks daily.
Home caregivers can help the client wash his or her feet every day. Thorough and careful drying is essential, especially between the toes. The caregiver should apply a light layer of lotion onto the feet, but avoid putting lotion between the toes, where it might be slow to dry.
Specially-trained professional homecare providers can trim the toenails for those with diabetes and are aware to trim nails straight across, and file the edges with an emery board to prevent snags and tears.