Is A Pedicure Safe For Diabetics?

This is a common question for most podiatrists. Lets start with the basics. A lot of diabetic patients have a condition called Neuropathy or LOPS (loss of protective sensation) and have no feeling to their feet. Any cut or scrape no matter how minor can lead to devastating results for a diabetic with these conditions because they are often not aware of it due to the lack of feeling.

As you know the feet are the foundation of the body. We all know what happens if the foundation of our house is off, walls crack, doors and windows stick the results can also be devastating. The same goes for your feet. While a pedicure feels good and may be relaxing as a diabetic you are more susceptible to getting an infection that can lead to serious consequences such as bone infections or what we call Osteomyelitis. Too many diabetics from a simple cut can end up with this type of infection and leads to IV antibiotics or even amputation.

People with well controlled diabetes can enjoy pedicures but need to reduce the risks. First, tell the pedicurist that you have diabetes; this simple information will help them to be the most careful. Have your own set of instruments that you take with you every time. This helps to reduce spread of infection and Dr. Bowman will be glad to let you know what you need. Some salons state they sterilize their instruments but be wary of this. Feet can be soaked but never in hot water and if you have cracks in your skin this should be seen by a podiatrist. When having the nails trimmed be sure to remind them to cut them straight across and never let them dig out an ingrown nail. If the nails are discolored or abnormally thick this may be a nail infection called Onychomycosis and should not be thinned by the pedicurist. Nail polish could hide a nail infection so be sure to look at them carefully before new polish is applied. No sharp instruments should be used to remove callous or corns on the toes, leave this to your Podiatric Physician.

Diabetics tend to have thinner skin and slower circulation thus, making you susceptible to infection so be sure to see a Podiatrist at least 3-4 times a year and if you suspect an infection, call right away.

Diabetic education is of extreme importance and Dr. Bowman can educate you on what you need to know and look out for. You can contact Dr. Bowman at 713-467-8886, or visit the website and see our educational videos on diabetes at

Category: Diabetes

Tags: Brittle Nails, Callouses, Corns, Diabetes, Foot Care, Foot Problems, Foot Treatment, Fungus, Fungus Infection, Infections, Ingrown Nail, Nail Fungus, Nail Problems, Onychomycosis, Pedicure, Pedicures, Salons, Skin Problems, Thick Nails, Toenail, Toenails, Yellow Nails