Diabetic Foot Care: Tips for Healthier Feet

June 9, 2023
prevent the flu infographic

Download a printable poster here.

People living with diabetes are prone to experiencing complications with their feet. Left untreated or unnoticed, serious foot problems such as infections or ulcerations can manifest quickly yet are often slow to heal. This article will explore valuable tips and resources to help reduce the risk of diabetic foot problems for healthier feet. 

Common Diabetic Foot Conditions

To help reduce the risk of developing serious foot problems, know the different types of diabetic foot conditions and what you can do to protect your feet.  

Nerve damage is a common reason for diabetic foot problems. Known as neuropathy, nerve damage in the foot can cause tingling, loss of sensation, stinging or burning pain, and weakness. When there is a loss of feeling or sensitivity in the foot, injuries often go unnoticed and untreated for extended periods of time.

Poor circulation in feet is also common in people with diabetes. Poor circulation affects blood flow, making it more difficult for a cut, blister, or other wound to heal.

Diabetes can also cause changes in skin condition. These may include dryness, peeling, and cracking of the feet. People with diabetes may develop corns or calluses more quickly. Foot ulcers are also commonplace on the bottom of the feet, typically the ball of the foot, or the big toe.

Foot Care Tips for People with Diabetes

Preventing the progression of existing foot problems starts with proper home care and management. Here are some tips for keeping your feet safe and healthy:

  • Inspect feet frequently— Check your feet every day for issues such as blisters, swelling, toenail problems (including ingrown toenails), redness, and cuts. Use a mirror if you can't easily see all of your foot. Contact your doctor if you find anything!
  • Wash feet daily— Wash your feet every day with mild soap and warm water using a soft washcloth. Carefully dry your feet by blotting the moisture away, and don't forget to dry the skin between your toes.
  • Moisturize— Apply moisturizer on your feet every day to help prevent dry skin from itching or cracking. Avoid putting it between your toes to minimize the risk of fungal infection.
  • Wear clean, dry socks— Change into dry socks as often as needed, and make sure to change them daily. Also, wear socks to bed if your feet are cold to preserve warmth and comfort.
  • Trim toenails carefully— Cut them straight across and not too short. If nails are cut too short, this can lead to the development of ingrown toenails.
  • Do not walk barefoot— Even in the comfort of your home, walking around barefoot can lead to accidental cuts and scrapes. Always wear shoes and socks to keep your feet protected from injury.
  • Do not use a heating pad – It is not recommended to use a heating pad to warm your feet. Since numbness is common in diabetic peripheral neuropathy, it is difficult to sense overheating or burning temperatures. Therefore, using a heating pad can put you at risk of burning your feet and worsening nerve damage.
  • Never treat corns or calluses on your own – Always visit your doctor to have corns or calluses treated safely and effectively.
  • Avoid Smoking— Smoking causes blood flow restriction to the feet.
  • Wear comfortable insoles—Wearing comfortable insoles in your shoes can help reduce the risk of developing sores, redness, and blisters. Choose insoles that provide complete contact, support, and comfort for greater foot protection. 
  • Schedule regular foot exams—Visit your doctor regularly for foot examinations to ensure your feet are in good health!

Taking proper care of your feet is vital in helping prevent foot complications associated with diabetes from occurring. AliMed offers a range of products designed to support proper diabetic foot care: 

If you have diabetes, it is important to take proper care of your feet. There are several foot complications that can worsen over time if specific precautions are not taken. However, your feet can remain functional and healthy with proper daily care at home.


AliMed, Inc. is a manufacturer and distributor of medical supply products, and is not a medical authority. The contents contained in this article, including text, graphics, imagery, and other materials, are for informational and educational purposes only. AliMed does not provide or intend to provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and the information contained here should not be treated as such. If you have questions about a specific medical condition or specific personal use of a medical device, always consult your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.

Although every effort has been made to present information that is accurate and true to the best of our knowledge, this content may contain omissions or errors. AliMed does not regularly update information or resources for this content and does not guarantee, make any warranties, and accepts no liability for the accuracy or completeness of the information presented.