IMPORTANT CHECKS: South Burnett Podiatry owner Katharine Butcher helps people stay on their feet longer.
IMPORTANT CHECKS: South Burnett Podiatry owner Katharine Butcher helps people stay on their feet longer. Jessica McGrath

Five things to check this National Diabetes Week

TOO many diabetics are diagnosed too late and a South Burnett podiatrist wants to help people stay healthy and on their feet longer.

South Burnett Podiatry owner Katharine Butcher recently took over the business and is passionate about educating people about their health.

"I want to help educate people and help people stay on their feet longer," she said.

Ms Butcher said diabetes could be highly manageable, particularly through education and understanding.

"It's about time that we stopped and realised the impact that diabetes can have on the life of a person, and that it is a very manageable condition," she said.

In the lower limbs, diabetes can have an impact on a patient's vascular supply, nervous system, skin integrity and they will have a higher risk of wounds.

"We go and get our skin check done, we go and get our blood pressure checked, why not get our blood sugar checked to make sure we aren't at risk of diabetes?" Ms Butcher said.

Diabetes can be caused by numerous things, including hereditary or lifestyle-related factors, she said.

"It is a manageable condition and you can take steps in getting your check-ups done for your foot health on a yearly basis to maintain a peace of mind of your conditions," Ms Butcher said.

People should also make sure they are wearing appropriate fitting footwear for their feet, not necessarily the right size but the shoe actually fitting the patient's foot, she said.

Ms Butcher moved to Kingaroy three years ago for work and is passionate about working in rural health after growing up in Childers.

South Burnett Podiatry is her dream clinic and she enjoys the Kingaroy community.

"It's got everything I'm looking for with a shoe shop - consultation rooms and with great access and location," Ms Butcher said.

Podiatry was her second career choice, with a special interest in vascular and pain management, after leaving a local government job.

A podiatrist should have a big involvement in someone's health, since without healthy feet and lower limbs a person is not able to reach their potential, Ms Butcher said.

Five things for diabetics to check this National Diabetes Week:

1. Get to know your feet, underneath and on top.

2. Keep an eye on your blood sugar levels.

3. Have an annual diabetic foot assessment with a podiatrist.

4. See a doctor or podiatrist if you notice any changes in your feet.

5. Keep your feet protected with footwear and warmth.

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