One of the symptoms of diabetes is swollen feet. This can be an uncomfortable and sometimes dangerous condition that requires education and attention. Here you can learn how to treat it.
Diabetes can cause capillaries to be damaged which releases fluid into the tissues of the feet, making them swell beyond their normal size. This condition, known as edema, can be painful and uncomfortable. It is important to establish a thorough routine for foot care to mitigate the effects of these symptoms.
Raise your legs
It is important to dedicate part of the day to putting your legs in an elevated position. Having your feet at a height allows some of the excess fluid in your feet to drain away, helping to relieve the swelling. Try lying down on the sofa with your feet supported by cushions so they are above the heart. Just 10-20 minutes a day can be enough.
Try a natural supplement
Before you try this, get some expert medical advice from your doctor. Adding magnesium to your diet can help reduce swelling caused by diabetes and many people report positive results. Many diabetics have a magnesium deficiency which can hinder normal cellular function resulting in water retention. This can be simply resolved by adding a supplement to your daily routine.
Buy a pair of compression socks
If you sit or stand for extended periods of time, it is a good idea to buy a pair of compression socks. These administer pressure upon the legs and ankles allowing for greater blood flow which decreases swelling. These are a good idea for long haul flights or if you are seated for much of the day.
Cut down on salt
One of the main causes of swelling is a high level of salt in the body. Excess salt raises blood pressure, which in turn causes swelling. Be careful about the amount of salt in the meals you prepare – ready made meals are often the worst culprits. A good way to help reduce your body’s salt level is to drink lots of water which helps to flush it out. Medical experts recommend 8 glasses a day.
Think about the shoes you wear
Sensible shoe wear choices are an important factor in treating diabetic swelling. Shoes that are too tight will exacerbate swelling. High heels are not recommend – instead make sure you wear comfortable shoes which allow ample room for your feet. Comfortable shoes for diabetes offer a little extra room which means that when you are experiencing swelling, your feet won’t be compressed tightly in the shoe. This helps to control the pain and will help you to continue with your day.
Indulge your feet
Treat yourself to a foot massage. If you are lucky you might have a partner who is willing to help with this. Alternatively, you could visit a specialist massage therapist. Foot massages increase blood circulation and therefore help control swelling. Importantly, it will help soothe the pain and provide some welcome relief.
There is no single solution for diabetics when it comes to treating swollen feet. What is required is trying a combination of techniques until you find something that helps. Once you find an effective treatment, incorporate it into a foot care routine that becomes part of your daily life.