Why prevention is important
Any injury or hard skin has the potential to develop into something more serious if you have diabetes. Usually when skin is damaged it heals quickly. But, if you have diabetes it may not heal so easily and sometimes this can cause a ulcer to form on your foot.
An ulcer is a wound or sore that takes a long time to heal. This kind of wound starts as a break in the skin which gets worse instead of better. The skin around an ulcer may look red or darker than normal. You may also be able to see some of the tissues underneath the top layer of skin. If the wound becomes infected then the skin may be swollen and you may have some fluid coming from it.
If you think you have an ulcer it is important to see your doctor straightaway. They can be serious but many can be treated successfully.
In very extreme cases if an infection doesn’t get better your doctor may suggest an operation to remove the infected toe or foot. This only happens in the most severe cases of infection and is a last resort. This kind of surgery is a frightening thing to think about and it’s natural to be worried. However, there are many things you can do to prevent foot ulcers from developing at all.
Although foot ulcers can be very serious they aren’t inevitable and can be prevented. By looking after your skin, checking your feet regularly and getting help quickly if you spot a problem, you can prevent minor problems from becoming more serious.