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Posts for tag: Diabetes

By Brian Cragg
December 13, 2012
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Diabetes   Dry Feet   frostbite   jack frost   cold feet   foor pain  

Protect your feet from frostbitePicture the season’s first real snowfall – throwing on your coat and boots with the exuberance of a child and taking your first steps in the snow. The crunch beneath your feet, the glint of the sun as it makes the snow sparkle like diamonds – it’s wintertime! We marvel at the wonderland around us, but it’s important to remember to keep your feet warm during the winter.

Keeping your feet dry is key to keeping them warm. Wet feet very quickly become cold feet, which can lead to serious issues like frostbite. Having dry feet begins with choosing the right pair of socks. Look for thick fleece or wool socks as opposed to cotton. These fabrics are far more waterproof than cotton and will do more to keep your feet nice and toasty.

It’s important that you choose the right kind of boots for your needs. They should be comfortable, waterproof, and spacious enough for your toes to wiggle inside of them. If you’re prone to particularly cold feet, consider investing in some packs of warmers. They heat up quickly and last for hours.

For those with diabetes, keeping your feet warm is especially important. The poor circulation associated with diabetes keeps an adequate flow of blood from reaching your feet, making them cold. That, coupled with the harsh elements, is a recipe for disaster. You should not only bundle up your feet when you go outside, but also wear warm socks and slippers when inside.

We all want to enjoy the winter fun, but it should never be at the cost of your health. If you have any questions or concerns about keeping your feet warm during the winter, give the Markham Foot Care Clinic a call at (905) 294-8087 to set up an appointment.

Protect your feet during cold and flu seasonCold season is upon us - the coughing, sniffling, sneeze-inducing weather that makes us want to hide beneath our duvets with a steaming bowl of soup. It can be a dangerous time for those with diabetes and you may be wondering how managing your condition figures in when you’re ill.

The first step is finding out if you are at risk.

Consistent, daily management of your diabetes is crucial. When we’re sick, our blood glucose levels fluctuate unpredictably. To manage these fluctuations, it’s recommended that you test yourself every two to four hours. This will help you prevent your blood glucose from spiking or dropping drastically.

Taking multiple medications at once isn’t ideal, but it’s important that you continue taking your diabetes medication and insulin while you are ill. When choosing a cold or flu medication, opt for sugar-free syrups and lozenges so you’re not adding extra sugar to your system.

Hydration is an important factor for all people who have diabetes. It’s even more important for those who are sick. Be sure to drink lots of water or flavoured, sugar-free beverages to replace any lost fluids.

Keeping your skin hydrated is also important, not only when you are sick, but also during the rest of the year. Have a bottle of lotion handy for any point in the day when your legs and feet become dry. Massage the lotion in, stimulating circulation. These additional moments can be imperative to the maintenance of your foot health.

Staying healthy during the winter months is important to all of us. If you have any questions about how proper diabetic healthcare affects the health of your feet, or if you are experiencing any foot discomfort, please contact our foot specialists. Brian Cragg, our Chiropodist, can assess your condition and give you the guidelines and care necessary to keep your feet healthy.

Canadian Diabetes AssociationThere are over 9 million Canadians today living with diabetes, and more likely than not, the chronic disease affects you or someone you know. With more people being diagnosed each hour, knowing if you are at risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes can help preserve the future of your health.

The main warning signs and symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes include:

  • Weight gain or loss
  • Cuts and bruises that are slow to heal
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet
  • Extreme fatigue

Even if you aren’t experiencing the above symptoms, if you are over the age of 40, or if a parent or sibling in your family has diabetes, it’s important to get checked and tested by your physician as these factors increase your risk for developing the disease.

Unfortunately, diabetes causes your pancreas to not produce insulin, which helps break down food into energy throughout your body. Uncontrolled blood sugar levels result from the deficiency, which can take a major toll on your feet.

People with diabetes often experience foot complications that commonly include:

  • Decreased circulation
  • Nerve damage, also known as neuropathy, where loss of feeling in the foot is experienced
  • Slow healing foot wounds that can develop into ulcers
  • Foot amputation as a possible result due to one or a combination of the above complications

How can you keep yourself protected from such problems? Although diabetes can cause serious and severe problems to your feet, the good news is that you can decrease your risk for developing these complications by managing your diabetes and blood sugar levels. Chiropodist Brian Cragg recommends incorporating these simple health tips into your life to prevent diabetic foot problems from affecting your life.

  • Take care of your feet and check them regularly for abnormal changes
  • Take your medication as prescribed
  • Maintain a healthy meal plan
  • Incorporate physical activity each day
  • Don’t smoke
  • Develop a management plan with your physician to keep your blood pressure and blood sugar levels in check

Protect your future health by being aware of your risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes! For more information, contact our office to set up an appointment with Brian.

By Brian Cragg
June 13, 2012
Category: Diabetic Foot Care
Tags: Diabetes   foot care   summer  


If you have diabetes, the warm summer months mean taking extra precaution when it comes to your feet. Although it’s important to take care of your feet each season year round, summer months can bring extra difficulties, which may include burned feet, puncture wounds, and dry or cracked heel.   Any of these foot difficulties can lead to severe diabetic foot complications.

In order to keep your feet happy and healthy this summer, Chiropodist Brian Cragg wants to provide these simple tips to incorporate into your daily routine.  They include:

  1. Never walk barefoot - especially at the pool, on the beach or even inside your house! Exposing your feet without the protection of a shoe can increase your risk for stepping on sharp objects, developing burns from walking on hot sand or pavement, and contracting a bacterial or fungal infection. Don’t put your feet at risk, so keep your feet secured in a shoe!
  2. Apply sunscreen to your feet daily. When it comes to putting on the SPF, you may not think to include your feet in the coverage. However, feet can easily burn on both tops and bottoms in the hot sun.  Make sure to apply sunscreen on all areas of your feet before you step outside.
  3. Apply moisturizing lotion daily. Warm weather can easily dry out your feet, which can lead to cracks and possible infection. Keep your feet properly moisturized by applying lotion on a daily basis. Avoid putting lotion on the areas in between your toes as the moisture can lead to a fungal infection.
  4. Summer heat can create prime conditions for your feet to swell. Elevate your feet whenever possible in order to reduce swelling, encourage blood flow circulation, and nerve function.
  5. Make sure your summer footwear is a proper fit. Wearing a proper fit shoe is critical to provide support and protection for your diabetic foot. Check each summer pair and toss out any sandals or flip-flops that are worn or don’t fit anymore.

Don’t let this summer season affect your feet! Follow these tips to ensure your summer is spent with healthy feet.  However, if you’re experiencing any diabetic foot complications, contact our office to set up an appointment with Chiropodist Cragg.

By Dr. Brian Cragg
November 23, 2011
Tags: Bruce's Mill   Diabetes   Arthritis   Weight Loss  

When it starts getting closer to Christmas and the weather starts turning chilly, it's pretty easy to forget about the outside world. We put the outdoor furniture in storage, take down the screen door, and buy heat retaining blinds to keep all the warmth in. These are normal things to do, but every once in a while, it's not a bad idea to bundle up and explore the outdoors despite the cold.

Our bodies are made to be active, not closed up in our houses for months at a time. Here's a question: When's the last time you stepped on ground that wasn't man-made? Sometime this week, try taking the dog for a walk outside or taking a hike at Bruce's Mill. Take simple safety precautions like having your phone and dressing warmly, but go out and embrace the outdoors! Stretch your legs out to somewhere that's not the coffee table.

By using and exercising your muscles  regularly, you strengthen the muscles that help support the joints which can help prevent arthritis. By staying active you may also prevent diabetes and many other diseases that can result from lack of exercise.

Making lifestyle choices like walking everyday lead to a healthier and more balanced life. Your body was made for more exciting activities than sitting at your desk.

Markham has lots of recreational activities, sign up for one today: http://www.guidingstar.ca/Recreational_Activities_in_Markham.htm