Diabetes and Footwear

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Jody Weightman, C.Ped (C), discusses diabetes and footwear selection.
Jody Weightman, C.Ped (C), discusses diabetes and footwear selection.
Video transcript

Featuring Jody Weightman, C.Ped (C)

Duration: 1 minute, 11 seconds

Diabetes can affect the foot fairly significantly.

Typically, what you'll see in a foot with diabetes, whether it's type 1 or type 2 , is that there will be decreased circulation and decreased sensation. So the lack of circulation really affects healing time so proper footcare is really important by someone who's trained in treating a diabetic foot.

In terms of sensation changes in the foot you will have decreased sensation typically with diabetes, and it gets worse the longer you have the disease. It's really important with decreased sensation to work with someone who can fit shoes properly and who can fit insoles properly, if that's needed, a specialist in those areas.

In terms of the shoe you want to make sure there's no seams on the inside of the shoe to irritate the top of the foot, and in terms of the insole you want to make sure that it's distributing the pressure across the bottom of the foot.

If there are any bony prominences there that are going to be prone to breakdown, that you have a little bit of an accommodation in the area of the prominence, just to even the pressure out through the bottom of the foot.

Presenter: Ms. Jody Weightman, Pedorthist, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Pedorthist

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Diabetes & Footwear


Decreased circulation and increased sensation are common symptoms of diabetic foot problems.


Decreased circulation and decreased sensation are common symptoms of diabetic foot problems.


Severe diabetes foot problems could lead to amputation.


If your blood sugar is not well managed, it can lead to diabetic foot problems such as neuropathy and infections. In severe cases, a patient may need an amputation.


Wearing high heels isn't recommended for patients with diabetes.


People with diabetes should generally avoid high-heeled shoes. They put pressure on the ball of the foot, which can cause issues if you have nerve damage. A patient with nerve damage might not even realize that their foot is becoming irritated or callused. which can lead to infection.


A tightly fitting shoe means that your foot is well supported.


Avoid shoes that are too tight. Make sure your toes have plenty of wiggle room and your feet don’t feel squished.


Trying on shoes in the morning is a good way to get the best fit.


Trying on shoes at the end of the day is best, because your feet are more likely to be a bit swollen. If your shoes feel comfortable when your feet are swollen, they are more likely to be comfortable throughout the day.

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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