What Are Diabetic Socks & Why Do I Need Them?
With so many be-all-end-all solutions on the market for diabetic nerve pain, what's so special about diabetic socks? While deceptively simple, a high-quality pair of cotton socks made for nerve pain can change the way you treat your feet. The feeling of being able to wear a pair of socks that both look and feel normal after dealing with such pain is amazing.
Diabetic socks are specially designed to help combat diabetic nerve pain by protecting your feet from further injury while providing the support you need in a sock. Because diabetics are often told by their doctors that they shouldn’t walk around barefoot, diabetic socks are an increasingly popular option to take care of your feet.
Why Do Diabetics Need Special Socks?
Diabetic nerve pain occurs because high blood sugar can lead to injuring nerves throughout your body. The most common type of this nerve pain is called peripheral neuropathy and starts in the feet and legs. Diabetic nerve pain is often very frustrating due to how sensitive it makes your skin. The pain is often described as a stabbing or burning sensation.
This pain can make wearing normal socks feel a little like wearing a cotton compression tube. Diabetic nerve pain can often be triggered with even the lightest of touches, so sometimes just putting socks on can cause extreme burning or stabbing pain. Because of this, many diabetic patients choose to wear specially made lightweight diabetic socks.
A high-quality pair of cotton diabetic socks can be useful for treating more than just diabetic nerve pain. A lightweight, white pair of socks is perfect for keeping a watchful eye out for foot infections or injuries. They're also easy to wash and don't require any special car, so you can keep your feet in a clean pair of socks all the time. This helps cut down your infection risk.
Diabetics are often told not to walk around barefoot, even in their own house. This is due to some diabetic nerve pain sufferers having less sensitivity in their feet, therefore making them more likely to miss a potential injury. A good pair of diabetic socks is a great remedy for those who aren’t eager to vacuum their house all the time just so they can wear shoes around the house.
What Exactly Are Diabetic Socks?
Diabetic socks are close-fitting, yet lightweight socks created to help alleviate diabetic nerve pain in the feet. They do this without constricting or leaving marks on your skin that can lead to irritation or even worse diabetic nerve pain. Designed specifically to not dig into skin, diabetic socks are also great for swollen feet looking for a comfortable rest.
A high quality diabetic sock will have many of the following perks:
- A fit that’s tight enough to say on, while staying loose enough to feel breathable and comfortable.
- Sturdy construction with as few seams as possible to minimize possible irritation.
- Made from a soft material that provides warmth to help promote proper blood flow, such as cotton.
- A special design to help relieve pressure on the legs and feet rather than constrict them.
- White or other light colored material in order to allow diabetics with decreased sensitivity in their feet to notice draining wounds or possible infections.
One of the most appealing parts about diabetic socks is that they often look just like regular socks. This means you can wear them incognito out to a restaurant, at work, or to a formal event. Nobody will know that you're even wearing special socks unless you tell them. The downside to this is that you may have to stop your spouse and family from ‘borrowing’ a pair and then never returning them because they’re so comfortable.
Many diabetic nerve pain patients prefer wearing soft cotton socks over compression socks. Diabetic socks are non-binding, but a high quality pair is carefully designed to minimize wrinkles that could cause skin irritation. They manage to stay loose enough to provide a breathable feel without falling down every six steps. This means that you can enjoy the soft cotton feeling without having to deal with the feeling of tightness offered by a pair of compression socks.
Well-crafted diabetic socks work hard to manage moisture. This helps reduce the risk of infection, a hazard which many diabetics work hard to avoid. Keeping your feet nice and dry comes with the added bonus of helping keep your feet from smelling.
Most high quality socks designed to help alleviate diabetic nerve pain eliminate the annoying toe seam. Often cited as one of the most annoying parts of the sock, the toe seam can be more than just annoying; seams can cause irritation that can lead to pain in those with diabetic nerve pain in their legs and feet. Well crafted socks meant for diabetics should feature as few seams as possible to reduce the risk of irritation.
Helpful tip: Make sure you pick a high quality brand of diabetic socks. Be sure to read the reviews of any socks you order online before ordering, or to talk to a sales person if you’re in a store. You’re looking for a sock with solid construction, durable material, and a reasonable price. Your feet deserve nothing less than the best, so it’s important to do your research while shopping for diabetic socks.
Beyond the Socks: Tips for Diabetic Foot Pain
While wearing a good pair of diabetic socks can do wonders for the health of your feet, there are additional ways to manage the pain that comes with diabetic nerve damage. You should keep as many tools in your pain management toolkit as possible. On your worst days, you’ll be glad you have a variety of ways to deal with your diabetic nerve pain.
Taking good care of your overall health is paramount when dealing with diabetic nerve pain. Be sure that you’re getting enough sleep, drinking enough water, and eating a balanced diet of healthy fats, proteins, and good carbs. It may take a few weeks to see the results of your hard work, but your entire body will thank you for it.
Taking into consideration the following tips when managing your diabetic nerve pain:
- Lower and control your blood sugar levels in order to help slow further nerve damage. This can be done with a combination of healthy diet, exercise, and medicine. This is by far one of the most important steps to managing your diabetic pain in any area of the body.
- Always keep your feet covered. Use a quality pair of diabetic socks to cushion your feet and help prevent possible injuries. Preventative care isn’t glamours, but it’s much better than dealing with an open cut or an infection.
- Consider trying a Vitamin B complex. B vitamins are essential for your health, and low levels of certain B vitamins has been linked to increased diabetic nerve pain. Talk to your doctor to see if you’re getting enough vitamins or if you should be taking a supplement.
- Take a warm bath. Warm water is great for increasing circulation throughout your body. Soaking in a relaxing bath after a long day can be a real treat as well. Because you may have decreased sensitivity in your feet, it’s important to test the water’s temperature before diving in to avoid the possibility of burns.
- Stay active. Exercise is an important part of managing your diabetes and the nerve pain that comes with it. Not only does exercising help lower your blood sugar levels, helping slow further nerve damage, it promotes healthy blood circulation as well.
- Take great care of your feet. Because diabetic nerve pain can lead to a loss of sensitivity in your feet, it’s important to give them a daily lookover for any potential injuries or anything out of the ordinary.
- Try a capsaicin cream. Using the same chemical that makes hot peppers fiery hot on your feet is actually a great way to manage the pain. The chemical works to block the pain receptors to provide temporary relief from the pain. This option should definitely talked over with your healthcare provider as there is the risk of an allergic reaction or skin irritation.
- Over-the-counter pain medication may be able to provide you with some relief from your diabetic nerve pain. If you find that aspirin or ibuprofen don’t provide enough relief on their own, you can still use them in conjunction with the other tips on the list as a combo to knock your pain out.
Diabetic Socks Are A Great Tool
If you’re looking for a way to keep your feet safe, clean, and comfortable while you go about your day diabetic socks are a great option. They provide the solid construction needed for a sock to last more than a few washes while still being soft enough to be used on sensitive diabetic feet. Even non diabetics can wear diabetic socks to take advantage of the perks and high quality construction.