Diabetes is the result of your body’s inability to make or use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps your body convert glucose, or sugar, into energy. If your body has difficulty metabolizing glucose, it can lead to high blood sugar. It can affect your body’s ability to heal wounds. In people with diabetes, wounds tend to heal more slowly and progress faster.
- Inflammation is a normal part of the wound healing process, Wound Source noted that this step often takes too long in healing diabetic wounds. This increases the chances of the wound becoming chronic, which means it does not heal as expected.
- Healthy amounts of blood must reach the wound site to promote healing. However, diabetes increases the risk of peripheral vascular disease, which narrows blood vessels and prevents rapid circulation to the affected area. As such, the wounded tissue cannot heal as quickly.
- Many diabetic patients suffer from neuropathy because high blood sugar levels can damage nerves and vessels, resulting in numbing in affected areas.
- Patients with diabetes have high blood sugar levels, which can inhibit nutrients and oxygen from reaching cells, prevent proper immune system function and increase cell inflammation.
- Inflammation is one of the natural stages of wound healing, but in diabetic wound healing, the inflammation stage frequently lasts too long and the wound can become chronic. In chronic wounds, the balance between producing and degrading collagen is lost and the wounds don’t heal.
- Slower movement of white blood cells in the wound site, along with less effective immune responses and wounds stuck in the inflammation stage, means that infection risk is higher in diabetic wound healing. Also, some diabetics are desensitized by neuropathy, which prevents them from recognizing that their wound is infected and getting worse.
Healing wounds in individuals with diabetes can be difficult, slow, and prone to serious infections. Because of the impact of diabetes on wound healing, it is important to take special care in treating even minor wounds of patients with diabetes and to urge them to do careful self-inspection daily.
Appropriate foot care includes: washing feet daily, patting the skin dry before applying moisturizer, avoiding walking barefoot, carefully trimming toenails, wearing comfortable shoes, inspecting feet and looking inside shoes daily.
Glucose Control: People with type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin for life to control their blood sugar. People with type 2 diabetes have more options – in addition to taking insulin and other medications, certain lifestyle adjustments, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and managing blood pressure. weight, can dramatically improve blood sugar.
People should take preventive steps before wounds develop to reduce the risk of wound healing complications.