Peripheral neuropathy usually affects the feet first before it moves to other parts of the body. As it spreads, the feet often remain the most affected area of the body. The pain feels like a pins and needles sensation that is very painful, and is often accompanied by a loss of feeling and sensation.
Because they have little to no feeling in their feet, sufferers of neuropathy run the risk of developing sores or ulcers because they cannot feel their presence. It is therefore important that they take very strict care of their feet and monitor them daily for the development of any sores. This is critical to the prevention of infection which can quickly spread to other areas of the body, as well as prevent amputation of their limbs.
One third of peripheral neuropathy cases are caused by diabetes mellitus, and people with diabetes are also prone to developing poor circulation in their extremities, including the feet. There is apparel designed to meet their needs including compression stockings and special shoes designed for peripheral neuropathy patients. They must be fitted by a certified shoe fitting experts, called pedorthists, who can be recommended to you by your doctor.
The pedorthist will take measurements of your feet which will be used to form a shoe insert that perfectly matches the contours of your foot. The soles of the shoes are very soft prevent damage to the bottom of of your feet which you may incur without your knowledge, due to loss of tactile sensation.
The material used to craft the shoe is soft and forgiving so that it does not apply undue pressure to your foot and cut off circulation. It is also waterproof to prevent your feet from getting wet, as it is important that people suffering from diabetic foot keep their skin dry except when washing.
A large percentage of foot amputations can be prevented by using these shoes in combination with closely monitoring the feet. You should inspect your feet daily for any signs of sores or ulceration, and keep them clean. Watch for calluses that may develop, especially when using new shoes that have not been broken in yet.
You should choose socks that are seamless because this prevents a seam from pressing against the skin cutting off circulation. Shoes and socks should be rather loose fitting for this very same reason.
It is worth contacting your medical insurance company to see if they will cover the cost of the shoes. Some insurance companies will give a partial reimbursement to diabetics and neuropathy patients who get a doctor’s recommendation that it is necessary that they utilize the shoes. Currently, Medicaid is not very helpful with reimbursement, however.
If you’re suffering from pain, loss of blood circulation, or loss of feeling in your feet, it can make a make quite a difference to use these special shoes.