Most people experience foot wounds from time to time. Whether you step on a sharp object or a blister bursts, proper wound care will help you avoid infections. If you do develop an infection, your Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, and Niceville, FL, podiatrist, Dr. Cosimo Ricciardi of Emerald Coast Podiatry, offers helpful treatments.
5 things to do if you have a wound
The sooner you treat a wound, the less likely it will become infected. Following these five steps will reduce your risk of infection:
- Clean the wound: Use a mixture of warm water and gentle soap to clean the wound. There's no need to press hard on the wound or scrub it when cleaning. Contrary to popular belief, pouring alcohol or hydrogen peroxide on wounds isn't a good idea. Although these substances may kill germs, they also damage healthy cells essential for healing.
- Apply an antibiotic ointment: Over-the-counter antibiotic ointments reduce the risk of infection and help your foot wound heal.
- Put on a bandage: It's important to cover your injury for a day or two until it begins to heal. If you don't cover it, debris and bacteria can enter your wound, triggering an infection.
- Change the bandage daily: Gently clean your wound, apply more antibiotic ointment and add a new bandage once a day. If the bandage gets dirty, replace it immediately.
- Look for signs of infection: When you change your bandage, pay attention to signs that may mean that your wound is infected. Signs can include redness, warmth, red streaks, pus or drainage, pain, and fever. Call your podiatrist in Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, and Niceville, FL, for a wound care appointment if you notice any of these symptoms.
Special tips for people who have diabetes
Foot infections are much more likely to occur if you have diabetes. High blood sugar slows healing and makes infections more difficult to treat. Daily self-exams are a must and can help you spot scratches, cuts, blisters, and other skin changes. If you happen to notice a red mark on your foot from a particular pair of shoes, avoiding those shoes can prevent the mark from turning into a blister or open sore. Don't wait to call the podiatrist if you notice signs of infection. Prompt wound care is particularly important for people who have diabetes.
Proper wound care is essential for foot injuries. Call your foot doctor in Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, and Niceville, FL, Dr. Ricciardi of Esmerald Coast Podiatry, at (850) 862-4119 to make an appointment for wound care.