Foot ulcers are sores in the feet that do not heal like normal wounds. Diabetes, a disease where the body can’t maintain adequate sugar levels in the blood, further extends the healing time of these ulcers. In a healthy individual without diabetes, wounds on the feet can heal anywhere from three to six weeks. In those with diabetes, the healing time is much longer.
Why does it take so long to heal a diabetic foot ulcer? Diabetes is an autoimmune disease that dysregulates blood sugar levels. When blood sugar levels are too high or too low, vessels that carry blood to and from extremities are narrowed, causing lack of blood flow to these crucial areas from poor circulation. Plaque may also build up from high blood sugar levels, further restricting blood flow. This poor circulation makes it harder for foot ulcers to heal because oxygenated blood to the affected area is needed for repair, and is not able to reach affected extremities.
Another reason foot ulcers take longer to heal in persons with diabetes, is due to a condition called diabetic neuropathy. Diabetic neuropathy is a condition where nerves are damaged resulting in loss of feeling to certain areas of the body, specifically the extremities. If someone has an ulcer on their foot, and is suffering from diabetic neuropathy, they aren’t able to feel or identify wounds, thus prolonging necessary foot pain treatment.
One final way that diabetes can prolong the healing of a foot ulcer, is by creating an environment for bacteria and infection to thrive. When blood sugar is too high is it easier for bacteria to not only grow, but thrive. Through this mechanism, healing to foot ulcers is reduced because the body is now using energy to fight infection instead of repairing affected areas.
So, how long does it take to heal a foot ulcer in diabetics? With proper treatment, a diabetic ulcer could heal in as little as four months. Proper diabetic foot care includes maintaining blood sugar so as not to further damage the ulcer. Keeping pressure off of the wound aids in healing also, as the tissue needs time to regenerate and recover. Cleaning, disinfecting and keeping the wound dry are also important steps in healing diabetic foot ulcers. Under the supervision of a trained professional, all of these treatments are ways to minimize damage to your feet and prevent more extensive and costly foot pain treatments.
People living with diabetes are at high risk for foot ulcers, and due to the nature of diabetes, are at even higher risk for long recovery times. One of the most influential factors on the nature of diabetic foot ulcers is to maintain blood sugar. This is not only a preventative measure in diabetic foot care, but a way to help maintain healthy blood flow and an ideal healing environment. Blood sugar can best be monitored and maintained by a licensed professional who can oversee care and treatment plans for optimal recovery.
Diabetic foot ulcers, if left untreated, can result in death of tissue, spread of infection and disease to other parts of the body, and in severe but not rare cases, amputation of body parts and even death. It is imperative for diabetics to closely monitor their blood sugar levels in efforts to prevent foot ulcers but also to aid in their treatment once discovered. Once blood sugar levels are under control, foot ulcers in diabetics can be further treated by improving blood flow to these areas through exercise, smoking cessation, and proper footwear.
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Foot ulcers can be extremely painful and life threatening if not treated. But with proper diabetic foot care and foot pain treatment from a trained professional, foot ulcers can be healed and precious extremities like the feet can be saved. Diabetic foot ulcer treatment is available in Noosa to deliver confidential, affordable care delivered by well trained professionals. A quick online search for “diabetic foot treatment near me” will reveal that diabetic foot ulcer treatment in Noosa by Suncoast Podiatry, comes highly reviewed and recommended by our local satisfied patients. We’d like for you to experience this same satisfaction!
Reach out to us today to receive prompt diabetic foot ulcer treatment in Noosa, and get on the promising road to recovery.