Finding the right diabetic shoes in Arkansas can be a hassle, but it doesn’t have to be. By choosing the right diabetic shoe inserts, you can drastically reduce a number of risks and complications, including foot ulcers, peripheral arterial disease (PAD), and even amputation.
Diabetic Risk Factors
Diabetes is highly prevalent across the United States with 10.5% of the population affected. Alarmingly, 34.5% of Americans have pre-diabetes, meaning they are at a very high risk of developing diabetes.
While some people with diabetes manage their condition very well, others are at a much higher risk of developing complications. Lifestyle plays a huge role in determining individual risk. For example, more than 21% of people with complications are smokers, and more than 68% have high blood pressure.
Other risk factors include:
- Obesity (Almost 61% of people who experience diabetes complications have a BMI of 30 or more.)
- Physical inactivity (which can lead to obesity)
- High cholesterol
How Diabetes Affects the Feet
Diabetes causes raised blood glucose levels, also known as blood sugar. When blood sugar is elevated, this can lead to poor circulation because the blood vessels in your legs and feet become hardened and more narrow. When there is less blood supply to your feet, you can end up with pain, poor ability to heal sores, and further complications.
Without regular check-ups on your feet and the right diabetic shoe inserts, these risks can cause infection, ulcers, or even worse—amputation.
Sometimes it can be hard to know if you are developing foot problems. This largely stems from not being able to see your feet clearly, and not having much sensation in them. Signs you should be aware of include:
- Tingling, numbness, or a painful, burning sensation
- Smooth shiny areas or hair loss on your feet and lower legs
- Swelling, blisters, or sores/wounds that won’t heal
- Lack of sweating
- A foul smell
Amputation of the Feet
Diabetic shoes in Arkansas can not only improve comfort, but help to reduce the risk of requiring foot amputation.
A 2018 report of Diabetes Care, the official journal of the American Diabetes Association, states 230 Americans must undergo foot amputation surgery every day. 85% of these amputations started as a diabetic foot ulcer. Unfortunately, amputation does not always solve the problem, and further amputation of the leg may be required in the future.
Amputation is a serious and scary procedure that affects the rest of your life. Adjusting to life without a foot or leg can take many years. Thus, prevention is better than the cure. This is why it’s crucial to manage diabetes properly and use the right type of diabetic foot inserts.
Good Diabetes Care Is Key
Diabetic amputation rates have halved in the last 20 years due to a better understanding about the condition and managing it. Having a well-balanced, diabetes friendly diet is one way you can stay in optimal health. You can eat:
- Colorful vegetables (broccoli, beetroot, courgettes, runner beans, and carrots)
- Omega-3 rich foods (tuna, salmon, and cod)
- Whole fruits (not blended)
- Whole grains and nuts
- Legumes (lentils and chickpeas)
To manage your diabetes and decrease your chance of a diabetic amputation, you should avoid eating:
- Sugary drinks or blended fruit smoothies
- Processed meats
- Ready-meals not specifically designed for diabetics
- Fried foods
- Very salty foods
It’s also important that you get sufficient exercise to maximize blood flow to your feet and other limbs. If the gym isn’t for you, you can still get enough exercise in the following ways:
- Take up a gentle sport like tennis or golf
- Use fitness video games
- Take the kids to the park and play games
Finally, it’s also important to look after the rest of your general health and well-being to keep your diabetes in check. Make sure you:
- Get ample sleep
- Socialize for better mental and physical health
- Stay mentally active
- Meditate or relax when you’re stressed
- Give yourself time to be alone to de-stress; stress can cause you to comfort eat which can make your diabetes worse
Where To Find Diabetic Shoes in Arkansas
To minimize your risk of adverse effects from diabetes, you can use diabetic shoe insoles. Diabetic insoles can help reduce your chance of foot complications and are available in Arkansas. Remember:
- Diabetic shoe insets are known to improve circulation, which helps any current sores or infections in the feet.
- Diabetic shoe inserts help prevent future problems from developing, so it is important that you use them, even if you do not have current issues. Due to the loss of sensation in your foot, it could be that a problem develops before you notice it. Therefore, being proactive is essential.
- If you’re asking yourself, “does medicare cover diabetic shoes and inserts?” the answer is— yes. If you have Medicare Part B, the cost of diabetic shoes is covered along with a wide range of other diabetic shoe options. Please, talk to your provider to find out which options are covered.
If you are looking for custom diabetic shoes in Arkansas, it’s vital you go to an expert in this field. Finding the right diabetic shoe inserts or shoes to help manage your condition is essential. Experts in orthotics and prosthetics can give you the custom support needed to maximize your chances of leading a normal, healthy life.
Getting Your Custom Diabetic Shoes in Arkansas
If you have diabetes and are currently worried about your foot health or want to take a proactive approach, Horton’s Orthotics & Prosthetics can help. We are happy to talk to you about diabetic shoe inserts, diabetic insoles, and the cost of diabetic shoes. We can also talk about lower limb prosthetics.
Contact us by calling (501) 683-8889. Our dedicated team can give you information about taking care of both the practical and emotional factors regarding diabetes care and amputation.