The Importance of Diabetic Shoes
Diabetic shoes are items that many recently diagnosed diabetics don’t really have to think much about or go out of their way to buy. The reason for this is that the feet of diabetics tend to be relatively standard for a long time, even after a diagnosis of diabetes.
Typically once diabetes has been diagnosed your body has slowly grown resistant to the hormone insulin and as a result more of this hormone is released. At the same time your blood sugar levels remain elevated for longer periods of time before returning to normal. Over time both of these end up causing a slow degradation of the health of your feet.
In advanced diabetic patients the years of damage inflicted on the body usually results in a couple things. First the nerves in the feet slowly lose their sensitivity to pain and or irritation resulting in more frequent foot injuries. In standard feet, irritation is more likely to be addressed and corrected before damage occurs but when you can’t feel the beginning stages of a blister you are unlikely to stop it before it forms.
Second, a lifetime of diabetes often results in poor blood flow to the extremities and capillaries around the body. The feet are major areas of the body that are affected by the poor circulation, and as a result, these areas of the body are less able to heal and more likely to succumb to infection. As you can see the two main problems that long term diabetic symptoms inflict on the feet only amplify the risk to your feet.
A good pair of diabetic shoes will be designed to address both issues. They will first be intended to minimize any and all irritation and protect the feet from outside elements which could hurt them. They will be closed toes and a little wider so that wide foot or oddly shaped feet will fit comfortably in the shoe and minimize pressure points and spot where skin irritation could occur.
People suffering from diabetes have compromised pancreatic functioning. Simply put, this means their pancreas either doesn’t produce any or enough insulin. Because insulin is the hormone responsible for controlling our blood sugar levels, this causes disruptions in our blood system particularly your veins. Diabetics commonly report problems affecting their vision, kidney function and their hands and legs. The problems with your feet are mainly the result of poor circulation leading to a loss of sensation in your feet.
Small foot problems for diabetics can be magnified due to their hyposensitivity or lack of feeling. A minor sore or cut can lead to something more serious as your feet not only take longer to heal but may also have trouble resisting any possible infections. In extreme cases, a nonhealing wound can develop from a small unnoticed foreign object in your shoe, and the resulting infection could require surgery or amputation. In most cases, suitable footwear will drastically reduce the chances of your feet developing problems.
A Good diabetic shoe will also not constrict the foot and make the problem of poor circulation even worse. If there’s anything that is important it is your body’s ability to fuel itself, fight against infection, and heal. This is why finding molded shoes, wide shoes, or custom made shoes for diabetics is important and worth the money. When the shoe is made specifically to fit the foot of a diabetic, it is going to be more likely to protect the foot and give it every opportunity to remain healthy on its own.
*The author of this blog is not a medical professional and this article does not contain professional medical advice. This blog is not intended to substitute for medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of the contents of this article. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.