Locating the Best Diabetic Shoes Near You and How to Select the Right Pair
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 37.3 million Americans have diabetes, which roughly equates to one out of every ten people. Additionally, the CDC reports that for every five people who have diabetes, one of them isn’t aware of it.
Statistically, you probably already know someone who either has diabetes or is prediabetic. One of the main symptoms that this demographic of patients suffers from are diabetic foot complications.
How Does Diabetes Affect the Feet?
Those who are afflicted with type 2 diabetes don’t respond to insulin properly, which is known as insulin resistance, or the pancreas simply doesn’t produce enough insulin. Eventually, the pancreas can no longer maintain blood glucose levels in a normal range. This leads to elevated blood sugar levels, which will eventually cause nerve damage (neuropathy) if untreated.
Those who have nerve damage in their feet are at high risk for skin damage, ingrown toenails, ulcers, calluses, bunions, and other foot complications. Severe cases may even lead to amputation. To ensure that diabetes sufferers don’t accidentally put their feet at risk, it’s recommended that they buy diabetic shoes to mitigate future complications.
How to Pick Diabetic Shoes
Before you buy diabetic shoes, it’s recommended to consult with a certified orthotist, podiatrist, endocrinologist, or diabetologist. Once they assess your foot condition, they will provide recommendations for the best diabetic shoes for your activity goals and foot shape.
Those who are unsure about how to pick diabetic shoes should consider the following features and tips:
- Extra depth and width: Diabetic shoes tend to offer more space in the toe area and overall design to accommodate foot deformities and swelling. This helps reduce pressure points and the risk of developing sores.
- Soft, seamless interior: The interior of diabetic shoes should be made from non-abrasive materials, such as foam or leather, to prevent friction and rubbing that can cause blisters or calluses. The absence of seams further minimizes irritation.
- Diabetic-friendly closures: Opt for diabetic shoes with adjustable closures like Velcro straps or laces. These provide a customized fit and allow for easy adjustment if your feet swell throughout the day.
- Cushioned insoles and arch support: Diabetic shoes often feature cushioned insoles that provide shock absorption and reduce pressure on the feet. Arch support is also essential to maintain proper foot alignment and distribute weight evenly.
- Non-slip soles: Look for diabetic shoes with slip-resistant soles to minimize the risk of falls or accidents. The outsole should provide good traction and stability.
- Choose the right size: Proper sizing is crucial for diabetic shoes. Have a professional orthotist measure them for you to ensure you get a perfect fit that is not constrictive. The best diabetic shoes are the ones that are custom fitted to your exact foot shape and size.
- Shop reputable brands and specialty stores: When purchasing diabetic shoes, it is recommended to only consider reputable brands or specialty stores that cater specifically to individuals with diabetes.
The Benefits of Buying Diabetic Shoes
For those who are suffering with nerve damage or other foot complications due to diabetes, it’s strongly recommended to buy diabetic shoes. Think of them as an investment in your health and continued mobility. The four main benefits of diabetic shoes include:
- Pressure redistribution: Diabetic shoes help redistribute pressure on the feet, reducing the risk of developing pressure sores or ulcers while providing a comfortable environment.
- Enhanced foot protection: The soft interior and seamless design of diabetic shoes minimizes friction and rubbing, which ultimately reduces the risk of developing blisters, calluses, and cuts. They also provide an extra layer of protection for individuals who have reduced sensation in their feet due to nerve damage.
- Improved circulation: Diabetic shoes with ample room can accommodate any foot swelling that may occur due to poor circulation. This prevents constriction and promotes better blood flow to the feet.
- Decreased risk of foot complications: By providing proper support, cushioning, and protection, diabetic shoes help mitigate infections, foot ulcers, amputations, and other foot complications.
Looking for Diabetic Shoes Near You in Kansas City? Contact Us Today!
Diabetic shoes often need to be used in conjunction with custom orthotics to ensure a perfect fit that won’t cause sores or blisters. Those who plan to buy diabetic shoes should contact the experienced team at Cotton Orthotic and Prosthetic Associates for a consultation.
After collecting some of your medical background and performing an examination of your feet, we can provide specific recommendations for diabetic shoes and custom orthotics. Use the contact form on our website to email us, or call (913) 338-2672 to speak with our scheduling department.