Shoes May Be Putting Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetics' Health At Risk Of Further Complications

If you have Chronic Kidney Disease or Diabetes, choosing the right shoes can help protect your feet from injury. While shopping, however, many Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetic patients think much more about the color, brand name, and look of a shoe rather than the actual purpose or construction of the shoe. Do you? If so, that is unfortunate because certain styles can actually put those with Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetes at risk of further complications.

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According to the National Kidney Foundation, ideal Diabetic and Kidney Disease patient shoes should distribute weight when their feet hit the ground, up through their joints (ankle, knee, and spine) to achieve optimal comfort. The wrong pair of shoes can cause a wide variety of problems: calluses, bunions, Neuropathy (nerve damage), and joint pain from the foot all the way up to the lower back.

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As I am sure you know, even minor foot problems such as calluses or blisters can cause serious complications for those with Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetes. Due to poor blood flow, especially to the feet, it makes wound healing more difficult which may result in infections and in severe cases, Amputation. Neuropathy, common in both Diabetics and those with Chronic Kidney Disease, complicates matters even further because if it is aggravated in the feet, the pain can prevent patients from walking all together.

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As suggested in a review by Dr. Farrokh Sohrabi, if you are living with Diabetes or Chronic Kidney Disease, shopping for shoes is more than simply a matter of style, it may determine your quality of life! First, look for a shoe that has a large enclosed front, as well as a closed back and top. Shoes that expose your toes or heels increase your risk for injury and infection. You may love slip-on shoes, sandals, clogs, and mules, but they may become a problem when it comes to Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetic foot care.

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Other good shoe features for a person with either Diabetes or Chronic Kidney Disease include: 

  1. Adjustable Closures such as shoes that have laces or Velcro. The built-in flexibility allows you to tighten or loosen your shoes depending on whether or not your foot is swelling.
  2. Wide toe. Steer clear of shoes with narrow or pointed toes because  a wider toe will provide your feet with more room, making irritation less likely.
  3. Low Heel (Flats or shoes with heels less than two inches high). Lower-heeled shoes reduce the amount of pressure applied to the ball of the foot.
  4. Soft Material. Choose styles made from soft materials, such as leather, mesh or a pliable synthetic fabric. Since feet tend to swell throughout the day, these softer fabrics will give and allow for swelling without discomfort. 
  5. Cushioned Inner Sole and Hard Outer Sole. The inside cushion will help reduce foot pressure and the risk for developing foot ulcers, sores, and other complications. On the other hand, a harder Outer Sole will help protect your feet from rough or sharp objects and provide shock absorption.

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A bonus tip, shoe shop later in the afternoon or evening in order to get a more accurate sizing since feet tend to swell throughout the day. For more Breaking News & Information about how Chronic Kidney Disease patients can improve their lives, visit your Friends at KidneyBuzz.com every day!

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References: 

"Walking: An Ideal Exercise for People with Kidney Disease." Http://www.davita.com. DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc.

Chris L. Wells, PhD, PT, CCS, ATC. "Selecting the Right Shoes." Http://www.kidney.org/. The National Kidney Foundation: A to Z Health Guide.

"11 Tips for Good Diabetes Foot Care - Foot Health Center - Everyday Health." EverydayHealth.com. Everyday Health Media, LLC.