"To The Veterans of the United States of America: Thank you, for the cost you paid for our freedom, thank you for the freedom to live in safety and pursue happiness, for freedom of speech, and for all the freedoms that we daily take for granted.”
Sara Niles, Torn From the Inside Out
Veteran’s Day annually falls on November 11th and marks an important day of honoring our veterans for their loyalty, hard work, and willingness to serve their country. We take time to celebrate the sacrifice and achievements of millions of Americans who have served and protected our nation both in times of peace, and war.
While this day is most dear to us, November brings to light another topic that affects millions of Americans and Veterans alike, Diabetes. American Diabetes Month is a time of raising awareness of the issues surrounding diabetes, as well as highlighting the people that this disease impacts. While Veterans Day and diabetes awareness are both very different topics, during this month it is important to realize how they relate and why feet are such an important factor.
How do they relate?
According to the American Diabetes Association, right now, 5.5 Million Veterans receive VA (Veteran’s Health Administration) health care services. Out of those 5.5 million veterans, every 1 out of 4 has diabetes.
What does this have to do with feet?
There are many foot problems that can accompany diabetes, some can be quick and severe, while others can be slow and make you susceptible to things like peripheral arterial disease or amputations.
Here are some common problems associated with diabetes:
Neuropathy: Nerve damage resulting in loss of feeling in the legs as well as pain.
Skin Changes: Dry feet resulting from losing control of nerves that affect oil and moisture.
Foot Ulcers: Ulcers occur most often on the ball of the foot or on the bottom of the big toe. Ulcers on the sides of the foot are usually due to poorly fitting shoes.
Poor Circulation: Blood vessels of the foot and leg to narrow and harden
How can DMFA help?
Here at the DM Foot & Ankle, Dr. Emini and I offer comprehensive and healthy foot treatments for the different complications that may occur with diabetes. We schedule annual foot examinations, in which we observe and treat overall health of patient’s skin, circulation, nerves, and foot structure. For neuropathic feet, we cut toenails safely and take care of calluses, which can ulcerate if left untreated. In terms of foot protection, we have 3 different lines of diabetic shoes (approved by Medicare) that help protect the feet with extra thickness in the soles. We offer all of these services and many more! Make sure to call our office with any questions or to schedule a foot exam if you are having problems like the ones mentioned above.
Be sure to help raise awareness of diabetes this month, and to thank each and every one of the veterans in your life!
BY: Michelle Kim