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Diabetes and Wound Care

Diabetes and Wound Care

What Diabetics Should Know About Wound Care

At some point in their lives, everyone experiences a cut, wound, or burn. Though it’s a part of life, for people with diabetes, these minor injuries, without proper care, could lead to severe complications and health issues.

When someone with diabetes develops a wound, their healing process may be delayed — if they heal at all. This can lead to infection and increase the odds of the infection spreading. If you or someone you love is living with diabetes, here’s what you should know about wounds and wound healing:

Common Causes

When glucose levels aren’t adequately controlled, your chance for proper wound healing decreases. When glucose levels are consistently high, the function of white blood cells is impaired. Your white blood cells play an essential role in your immune system and when they are not functioning as they should, they make it difficult for your body to fight bacteria and heal wounds at a normal rate.

Additionally, when diabetes isn’t controlled properly, your circulation decreases. As it does, your blood flow slows, making it harder for your body to deliver nutrients to any wounds you may have, ultimately slowing down the healing process.

Lastly, those with diabetes may also develop neuropathy (nerve damage), leaving you with a numbing sensation in the affected area. For instance, if a wound occurs on a foot where the nerve damage is present, you may not even be aware of it.

Prevention Is Key

When an infection is present, it may spread to nearby tissue or bone. If ignored, infections, in some cases can be life-threatening. Not to mention, slow healing of wounds could limit your health and wellness. Constant cuts or injuries to your feet or legs can affect your daily activity. To avoid complications, prevention is a must.

  • Manage Blood Sugar: Since consistently high blood sugar levels impair your chance of healing, managing your glucose level is the best course of prevention. For those with type 1 diabetes, that will entail taking insulin for the remainder of their life. For type 2 diabetes, medications, insulin, or adjusting your diet or lifestyle may help you get to healthier blood sugar levels. Speak with your physician about the best option for you.
  • Practice Proper Foot Care: Wearing comfortable shoes, avoiding walking barefoot, and consistently inspecting your feet daily are just some of the ways you can practice proper foot care. Your doctor will most likely check your feet at every visit, too.
  • Treat Wounds Fast: If you do find that you have a cut or wound on your body, be sure to clean it and cover it with a clean bandage daily. If the wound is located on your foot or doesn’t appear to be healing, you’ll want to seek treatment. Antibiotics might be needed to help avoid/fight any infection. Either way, if the wound is painful, doesn’t heal for several days, or seems to be infected, seek treatment immediately.

Comprehensive Wound Healing

When it comes to chronic wounds, our Wound Healing Center offers clinical treatments, therapies, and support services. Each patient is thoroughly evaluated and given a custom treatment plan. For additional information on how Henry County can be your partner for healing, check out our website or contact us at 419.592.4014 today!