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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
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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.
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If the level is below 70 and you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

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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