Skip to content

Diabetes Health Center

Font Size

Diabetes: Protecting Your Feet - Topic Overview

Because you have diabetes, you will need to be especially careful to protect your feet from injury.

General precautions

  • Wear shoes all the time. If you do not want to wear shoes indoors, wear slippers with hard soles and good support. Keep your shoes next to your bedside, and slip them on your feet as soon as you get out of bed. This will help you develop the habit of wearing footwear and will protect your feet.
  • Wear socks in bed if your feet are cold at night.
  • Apply sunscreen to the tops of your feet when they will be exposed to the sun.
  • Wear protective beach or surf shoes when swimming. Wear shower shoes in public baths and pools to prevent athlete's foot, plantar warts, and other contagious conditions.
  • Keep the walkways in your home clear. Pick up objects that you might trip over. Arrange the furniture so that you have a clear path through your house, especially a clear path to the bathroom at night.

Check your shoes

  • Always check inside your shoes before you put them on. Look and feel for loose objects, pebbles or dirt, a torn lining, rough spots, or anything else that could cause discomfort or injury.
  • Before putting on your shoes, check the soles of the shoes for any nails or tacks that may puncture your foot.

Things to avoid

  • Wearing tight shoes
  • Wearing shoes without socks or stockings
  • Walking barefoot, even indoors
  • Using hot water bottles or heating pads on your feet
  • Walking on very hot pavement or beach sand while barefoot or while wearing thin-soled shoes
  • Wearing garters or tight-fitting socks or shoes
  • Sitting with your legs or ankles crossed

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 26, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    1
    Next Article:

    Diabetes: Protecting Your Feet Topics

    Today on WebMD

    Diabetic tools
    Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
    woman flexing muscles
    10 strength training exercises.
     
    Blood sugar test
    12 practical tips.
    Tom Hanks
    Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
     
    kenneth fujioka, md
    Video
    Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
    Article
     
    Middle aged person
    Tool
    Home Healthcare
    Video
     

    Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
    Article
    type 2 diabetes
    Slideshow
     
    food fitness planner
    Tool
    feet
    Slideshow