Diabetes can cause two potentially dangerous threats to your feet. It can damage the nerves in your feet and it can reduce blood flow to your feet.

When the network of nerves in your feet is damaged, the sensation of pain in your feet is reduced. Because of this, you can develop a blister or cut your foot without realizing it.

As a result of decreased sweating, your feet may become dry and scaly. The skin may peel and crack.

Diabetes can also narrow your arteries, reducing blood flow to your feet. With less blood to nourish tissues in your feet, it’s harder for sores to heal. An unnoticed cut or sore hidden in your socks or shoes can quickly develop into a larger problem.

The following are tips to help you care for your feet offered by “Mayo Clinic on Managing Diabetes.”

 

Check Your Feet Every Day

Use your eyes and hands to examine your feet. If you cannot see some parts of your feet, use a mirror or ask for help in looking in those areas. You will be looking for:

  • Blisters, cuts and bruises
  • Cracking, drying, peeling and wrinkling
  • Scratches and breaks
  • Ingrown toenails
  • Redness, red streaks and swelling
  • Feet that are pinker, paler, darker or redder than usual, possibly due to pressure from tight shoes
  • Callouses and corns

 

Keep Your Feet Clean and Dry

Wash your feet every day with lukewarm water. Wash your feet with a gentle, massage- like motion, using a soft washcloth or sponge and mild soap. Dry your skin by blotting or patting. Rubbing may result in you accidentally damaging your skin. Dry carefully between your toes to help prevent fungal infection.

 

Moisturize Your Skin

When diabetes damages your nerves, you may sweat less than normal, leaving your skin dry, especially on your feet. Dry skin can itch and crack, increasing your risk of infection. To prevent dry skin, use a moisturizer regularly.

 

Keep the Blood Flowing

To help keep blood flowing to your feet, put your feet up when sitting, then move your ankles and toes frequently. Don’t cross your legs for long periods of time and don’t wear tight socks.

 

Wear Clean Dry Socks

Wear socks made of fibers that pull sweat away from your skin, such as cotton and special acrylic fibers – not nylon. Avoid socks with tight elastic bands that reduce circulation or that are thick or bulky. Finally, do not wear socks with thick seams that can rub or irritate your skin. Indentations from the seams in socks can cause pressure sores for people with diabetes.

 

Trim Your Toenails Carefully

Cut your toenails straight across so that they are even with the end of your toe. File rough edges so that you don’t have any sharp areas that could cut the neighboring toe. Be especially careful not to injure the surrounding skin. If you notice redness around the nails, report this to your regular doctor or your podiatrist.

 

Use Foot Products Cautiously

Don’t use a file or scissors on calluses, corns or bunions. You can injure your feet that way. Also, don’t put chemicals, such as wart removers, on your feet. See your regular doctor or podiatrist for problem calluses, corns, bunions or warts.

 

Wear Shoes to Protect Your Feet From Injury

To help prevent injury to your feet and toes:

  • Protect against heat and cold – Don’t use heating pads on your feet
  • Always wear shoes – At home, wear sturdy slippers
  • Check your shoes – Look inside your shoes for tears or rough edges, or foreign objects such as pebbles
  • Pick a comfortable and safe style of shoe – Good shoe design includes:
    • Soft leather tops
    • Closed-toe design
    • Low-heeled shoes
    • Flexible soles made from crepe or foam rubber

You are advised to have at least two pairs of shoes so that you can switch shoes every day. This allows your shoes to dry out and regain their shape.

Don’t wear wet shoes because moisture can shrink the material and make your shoes rub against your feet.

The Mayo Clinic’s “The Essential Diabetes Book” offers these tips when buying new
shoes:

  • Make sure the tip of each shoe extends at least a quarter inch beyond your longest toe. The shoe tip also should be wide and long enough that your toes aren’t cramped.
  • If possible, try on shoes in the early afternoon. Feet swell as the day goes on.
  • If one foot is bigger than the other, buy shoes to fit your larger foot.
  • If you have reduced sensation in your feet, take the shoes home and wear them for 30 minutes. Then remove them and examine your feet. Red areas indicate pressure and a poor fit.

According to “Diabetes A to Z,” published by the American Diabetes Association, shoes that fit are comfortable when you buy them. Almost all new shoes are a little stiff at the start and mold to your feet with wear.

But this is different from buying the wrong size and trying to break them in. Make sure there is room for you to move your toes.

 

Customized Foot Orthotics

Our expert staff at Ponsi can create customized foot orthotics on the premises to help you prevent callouses, which in turn prevents ulcers from arising.

As a result, our customized foot orthotics help prevent amputations from occurring, which means less time that diabetic patients have to spend in hospitals.

In order to make customized foot orthotics, foam impressions of the patient’s feet are made. Certified Ponsi staff then pours plaster into the impressions in order to mold materials into the shape of the patient’s feet for a customized, exact fit.

 

Diabetic and Supportive Footwear

Ponsi features the finest in diabetic and supportive footwear in the Pittsburgh, Greensburg and North Huntingdon areas. We have men and women’s diabetic and supportive shoe brands for all of your fashion, casual, outdoor, fitness and comfort needs.

Please look below to see our selection of men and women’s diabetic and supportive footwear and please visit or contact us for additional information.

Diabetic Footwear

  • SAS (Women’s Free Time, Me-Too, Walk Easy, Men’s VTO, Time Out, Bout time.
  • P.W Minor (Women’s Pleasure, Joy and Leisure Men’s Leisure Time, Natural)
  • Drew Shoes
  • Apex ( MBS Shoe in women’s and men’s)
  • Aetrex
  • New Balance (Women’s 623, 624, 626, 813, 840, 847, 857, 860, 928, 940, 1201, 1300,
    1340, 1400, 1540; Men’s 623, 624, 626, 813, 840, 847, 857, 860, 928, 1100, 1201, 1340,
    1400, 1540, 1700, 1865)
  • Propet (Women’s Olivia, Erica, Ped Walker, Cronus Men’s Cliff Walker, Cronus, Scandia Strap)
  • Dunham (Men’s Cloud, Strategy)
  • Dr. Comfort (Men’s William, Edward Women’s LuLu)
  • Mt. Emey (Women’s and Men’s Bunion & Edema shoe)
  • Apis
  • Hush Puppies (Women’s Power Walker Men’s Gus, Gill)
  • Ped-Lite
  • Men’s Oliver

Supportive Footwear

  • SAS (Women’s Free Time, Me-Too, Walk Easy, Simplicity. Men’s VTO, Time Out, Bout time)
  • P.W Minor (Women’s Pleasure, Joy and Leisure Men’s Leisure Time, Natural)
  • Drew Shoes
  • Apex (MBS Shoe in women’s and men’s)
  • Aetrex
  • New Balance (Women’s 623, 624, 626, 813, 840, 847, 857, 860, 928, 940, 1201, 1300,
    1340, 1400, 1540; Men’s 623, 624, 626, 813, 840, 847, 857, 860, 928, 1100, 1201, 1340,
    1400, 1540, 1700, 1865)
  • Propet (Women’s Olivia, Erica, Ped Walker, Cronus Men’s Cliff Walker, Cronus, Scandia Strap)
  • Dunham (Men’s Cloud, Strategy)
  • Foam Treads (Men’s Tradition and Regal Women’s Tradition and Sapphire)
  • Dr. Comfort (Men’s William, Edward Women’s LuLu)
  • Mt. Emey (Women’s and Men’s Bunion & Edema Shoes)
  • Apis
  • Red Wing
  • Hush Puppies (Women’s Power Walker Men’s Gus, Gill)
  • Ped-Lite
  • Men’s Oliver

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