Diabetes: First aid for diabetic wounds

Individuals who have diabetes must emphasize the importance of proper wound care since even minor wounds can become severe which is often due to a weakened immune system linked with the condition.  Take note that diabetes can lead to a compromised sensation of pain and inability to fight off infection, treating diabetic wounds would require special care and monitoring to ensure proper healing.

Majority of diabetics suffer from neuropathy in which they have nerve damage that keeps them from feeling scrapes, cuts or blisters until they become infected. These diabetic wounds can become infected due to the compromised immune system. In addition, individuals who have diabetes have constricted arteries in the legs, making the flow of blood difficult. If there is no adequate blood flow to an injury, it cannot heal properly. Even a simple wound can become badly infected and will not heal normally.

Increased risk for diabetic ulcer

A skin ulcer is an area in the skin in which the underlying tissues is present due to damage. Majority of skin ulcers occur on the feet or lower legs. The skin typically heals quickly if there is damage. Nevertheless, in some individuals with diabetes, the skin on the feet does not heal properly if there are wounds and they are prone to developing an ulcer. Even though foot ulcers due to wounds on the feet can be treated, they can become worse and take a long a time to heal among those who have diabetes. In severe cases, it can even lead to gangrene.

How to deal with diabetic wounds

When it comes to diabetic wounds, they must be treated as a major injury with appropriate first aid measures even if it is a small scrape or cut. Clean the wound thoroughly and check for swelling and pus which are indications of an infection. For severe cases of diabetes, the doctor examines the wounds to ensure proper care.

diabetic wounds

Diabetic wounds must be covered to promote proper healing.

Treat wounds with antibiotic ointments and closely monitor to ensure that they heal. For small wounds, cover with a clean bandage that requires regular changing to promote proper healing. As for major wounds, the doctor handles such cases since they can be life-threatening for diabetics.

It is important to keep pressure off the wound as it starts to heal. Always make sure that the skin surrounding the wound is clean all the time while the bandages are changed on a daily basis. Do not forget to check if there are blisters and calluses that cannot be felt on the feet and provide the appropriate measures for wounds if there are any. In case of infection or wounds that do not heal, it is best to consult your doctor.

FACT CHECK

For more information on this topic, visit:

https://www.apma.org/Patients/FootHealth.cfm?ItemNumber=981

https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/diabetes-wounds-caring-sores#1

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320739.php

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