Taking care of your feet is an important element of personal hygiene but it becomes all the more necessary if you have diabetes. Diabetes happens when the body does not produce enough levels of insulin to process and balance its glucose levels.
High glucose levels in the body for long periods of time can harm multiple organ systems including the feet. Two common foot complications resulting from diabetes involve neuropathy and vascular disease.
Neuropathy from Diabetes
People with diabetes often experience damage to the nerves in their foot and as a result become numb and insensitive to pain. Feeling pain is an important survival tactic for humans because it cues the brain to generate actions that drive the source of pain away from us.
The lack of pain sensitivity means that many diabetics will develop cuts, bruises, blisters and even abrasions that they may not even notice. Such injuries may seem minor in the beginning but if left untreated can develop into severe forms. Hammertoe or bunion surgeries are examples of how serious foot deformities can get.
Vascular Disease from Diabetes
Diabetic conditions may cause the inner walls of blood vessels to become thick and inflated, which is dangerous because it means there’s less space for blood to flow. A partial or complete blockage of blood flow will make it difficult for the patient to maintain foot health.
Patients with vascular disease are less resistant to foot infections and if any of the tissues in their feet are damaged, they’re likely to heal at a markedly slower pace.
Do I Need Orthotics?
It’s possible for diabetic patients to develop both, neuropathy and vascular disease. In this case, the risks are elevated significantly because the patient does not feel pain and can’t fight off infections. Any foot-related diseases and injuries will take prolonged periods to heal. Therefore, it’s highly recommended for all diabetic patients to seek orthotics.
Proper footwear is an essential part of counteracting diabetes. After all, prevention is better than cure.
A starting point would be to seek out the top foot and ankle surgeons in your area and talk to them about orthotics. Their expertise and knowledge will help you figure out the kind of shoes you should get made depending on your condition.
However, keep in mind that not all diabetic patients need customized footwear. Sometimes a diabetic insole can be inserted into your existing shoes to get the job done. When you book an appointment with a doctor, make sure to take your shoes with you for proper examination. They will tell you exactly what your condition warrants.
Looking for diabetic shoes in Miami Beach, FL? Contact the Foot and Ankle Institute now! We offer medical treatment and reconstructive surgeries for all types of foot and ankle related problems.