Why Are Diabetic Feet Always Cold?
People with diabetes often find that their feet are always cold, even when they’re doing their best to keep them covered and warm. There are a variety of causes for cold feet; and diabetics are at risk for many of them. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the common causes of cold feet and ways you can keep your feet a bit warmer this fall and winter.
Common Causes of Cold Feet
Be sure to talk to your doctor if you experience cold feet for an extended period of time. While it may seem like a small issue to you, cold feet can often be a symptom of a larger problem. The following are some of the most common issues that cause cold feet.
Diabetic neuropathy is the technical term for diabetic nerve damage. This nerve damage is caused by uncontrolled blood sugar levels. Lowering the risk of developing neuropathy in your feet is one of the benefits of controlling your blood sugar through a healthy diet and exercise.
Those that suffer from diabetic neuropathy should invest in a high-quality pair of diabetic socks. Not only do they keep your feet warm; they can help soothe neuropathy-related pain and help improve circulation.
Diabetics in particular have a tendency to suffer from poor blood circulation in their legs. This causes your feet to feel cold due to the lack of warm blood flowing into them. Poor circulation can be caused by leading a sedentary lifestyle, high cholesterol, and some heart conditions.
Those who believe that they suffer from poor circulation should talk to their doctor, as this can often be a sign of more serious complications.
Medication Side Effects
Some medications can cause cold feet as an unintended side-effect. This is most often associated with medications that affect your blood vessels. Medications for headaches, blood pressure, and colds can cause this side effect. Your pharmacist and doctor will work with you to determine if your cold feet are a side effect from your medication or a symptom of a different issue.
Stress and Anxiety
Stress and anxiety are the source for a wide variety of problems; and cold feet are no different. Extremely high levels of stress and anxiety can cause your feet to feel cold, clammy, and shaky. This is due to our body’s natural response to stress; the release of adrenaline can cause your blood vessels to constrict. This causes your feet to feel cold the same way that poor circulation or a medication side effect might.
Remember to talk to your doctor about your cold feet! They will be able to help you determine the cause and figure out a management or treatment plan.
How You Can Manage Cold Feet at Home
Dealing with perpetually cold feet can feel like an uphill battle. Once you identify the cause of your cold feet, you have to find a way to manage them. The following are some at-home remedies you can use to keep your feet at a comfortable temperature level. Remember to consult your doctor before making any major changes to your health care routine.
- Wear diabetic cotton socks and shoes at all times. Make sure your socks are warm and comfortable; your shoes should have soles thick enough to protect and support your feet.
- Keep a watchful eye on your feet for cuts, scrapes, and anything else that the coldness of your feet may numb you to.
- Stay active throughout the day. Regular exercise works to manage your blood sugar levels and help promote circulation to your feet.
- Foot baths, heating pads, and hot water bottles can be used to help warm up extremely cold feet. Care should be taken to check the temperature before use, as these can burn your skin.
- Do not walk around barefoot, as this leaves your feet both cold and exposed to potential injury.
- Do not use hot water baths, heating pads on the hottest settings, or any sort of high heat on your feet. Diabetics especially can lose feeling in their feet; meaning you can be burned before you ever realize it. Always check the temperature before you introduce your feet to a home remedy.
- Try to avoid sitting sedentary for long periods of time. Small walks around the office or a simple stretch in front of the TV can do wonders for the blood circulation in your feet.
Diabetic Feet Don’t Always Have to Be Cold!
While diabetics have a tendency to have colder feet; there are a variety of causes behind the issue. Because of this, it’s important to talk to your doctor about your cold feet and ways to combat it. Through the use of diabetic cotton socks, home remedies, and a dedication to your overall health, you can combat your cold feet and move through your day with warm toes again.