Diabetics are at an increased chance of ulcers and infections on their feet so diabetic socks are constructed differently from regular socks to help protect diabetic feet.Diabetic socks are seamless inside, so they don’t cause rubbing, which can lead to ulcers. They also do not have elastic, to prevent any circulation issues commonly seen with diabetics.
Diabetics should never go without socks. The inside of a shoe is not only packed with dangerous bacteria, but also has stitching that can irritate the feet and lead to blisters or sores.
Diabetic socks have several advantages went compared to traditional socks. They are made of moisture wicking materials that help keep the foot dry and comfortable all day long. Excessive moisture can lead to fungal infections such as athlete’s foot or toenail fungus, something that diabetics are already at an increased risk of contracting due to their bodies decreased immune system response.
Diabetic socks also have padded areas to help protect feet. This can help reduce pressure on sensitive areas of the feet. Without these padded areas the feet are in danger of forming blisters or sores in these areas. For diabetics this is a very real danger. Blisters and sores can easily lead to an open wound, or ulcer on the foot. Diabetics suffering from peripheral neuropathy may not feel these wounds due to the lack of sensation in their feet. Diabetics are also slow to heal these, which increases the chances of infection or even amputation.
Diabetic socks are offered in a variety of materials including acrylic and wool, both of which are better at wicking moisture away from the foot than a traditional cotton sock. Some special diabetic socks include cutting edge technology that track the temperature of the foot. If the tech sock notices a change in foot temperature it can indicate the start of an ulceration and alert the patient to the potential danger.
If the diabetic patient is suffering from diabetic neuropathy then the podiatrist may recommend compression socks to help increase blood flow to the feet as well as decreasing swelling.