Preventing Diabetic Foot Ulcers

Managing diabetes can help relieve underlying health issues. It can not only promote faster wound healing, but also reduce risk factors that may contribute to a diabetic foot ulcer. For instance, good blood glucose management helps maintain adequate circulation and oxygen flow to the lower extremities.

Good diabetic control and lifestyle modifications include:

  • Keeping blood glucose levels optimal
  • Maintaining good nutrition and eating habits
  • Reducing high blood pressure
  • Avoiding smoking

Diabetic Foot Care to Help Prevent Ulcers

In addition to maintaining good diabetic control, a healthcare professional should instruct individuals with diabetes to:

  • Examine their feet daily with a mirror and look carefully for fungal infections or any abnormalities.
  • Wash and dry feet at least once a day in lukewarm water (tested with elbow), paying special attention to drying between the toes.
  • Do not use heating pads or place feet close to heaters.
  • Always use footwear inside and outdoors.
  • Use close-toed shoes if they cannot feel their feet.
  • Use cotton socks and change them daily.
  • Have a podiatrist or wound care professional carefully cut toenails so the individual does not accidentally hurt themself.
  • Treat dry feet with lubricants, but do not apply between the toes.

Important Things to Note

In addition, those with diabetes should have a comprehensive foot exam yearly. Along with this careful physical exam, healthcare professionals should reinforce best practices of diabetic foot self-care at each visit. This can help to ensure the individual understands the recommendations and importance of caring for their feet.

For more information, visit the APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) website at Also, to learn more about wound care, visit our blogs page at

*Disclaimer: Any health and wellness content presented is for general informational purposes only. Such content is not intended to replace or serve as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.