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Taking Care of Your Feet for a Lifetime

Tips for Proper Footwear

Proper footwear is very important for preventing serious foot problems. Athletic or walking shoes made of canvas or leather are good for daily wear. They support your feet and allow them to "breathe."

Never wear vinyl or plastic shoes, because they don't stretch or "breathe."

When buying shoes, make sure they are comfortable from the start and have enough room for your toes.

Don't buy shoes with pointed toes or high heels. They put too much pressure on your toes.

Ask Your Doctor about Medicare Coverage for Special Footwear.

You may need special shoes or shoe inserts to prevent serious foot problems. If you have Medicare Part B insurance, you may be able to get some of the cost of special shoes or inserts paid for. Ask your doctor whether you qualify for:

1 pair of depth shoes* and 3 pairs of inserts or,

1 pair of custom molded shoes (including inserts) and 2 additional pairs of inserts.

If you qualify, your doctor or podiatrist will tell you how to get your special shoes.

*Depth shoes look like athletic or walking shoes, but have more room in them. The extra room allows for different shaped feet and toes, or for special inserts made to fit your feet.

To Do List

Print this list and check each item when completed.



by when:

Use the list of foot care tips and put it where I will see it every day.


Get a pair of nail clippers, an emery board, and a pumice stone.


Buy soft cotton or wool socks.


Buy a pair of shoes that fit well and cover my feet. Give away shoes that don't fit.


Place slippers beside my bed to wear when I get out of bed.


Get a mirror to help me see the bottoms of my feet.


Ask for help from a family member or care giver if I can't see my feet.


Keep my next doctor's appointment.


Ask my doctor if I qualify for special shoes covered by Medicare.


Plan my physical activity program with my doctor.


Stop smoking.


For More Information, Please Contact:

American Association of Diabetes Educators
444 North Michigan Avenue,
Suite 1240
Chicago, IL 60611-3901

American Diabetes Association
1660 Duke Street
Alexandria, VA 22314

American Podiatric Medical Association
9312 Old Georgetown Rd.
Bethesda, MD 20814

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Division of Diabetes Translation
Program Development Branch
4770 Buford Highway, NE,
Mailstop K-10
Atlanta, GA 30341-3724

Juvenile Diabetes Foundation International
120 Wall Street, 19th Floor
New York, NY 10005

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse (NDIC)
1 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892-3560


WebMD Public Information from the U.S. National Institutes of Health

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People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

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