- Relieve areas of excessive pressure.
A cushioned insole that conforms to the foot helps disperse pressure over the greatest possible area, thereby reducing the number of “hot spots”.
- Absorb and/or disperse shock.
The full-length cushioning midsole and molded inserts found in all Oasis shoes absorbs impact on heel strike and disperses pressure throughout the gait cycle.
- Limit abrasion of the foot.
Plush vamp linings with as few seams as possible prevent abrasion of the skin which could lead to ulcers, inflammation, and other serious health problems.
- Accommodate a wide range of fit issues.
Diabetic shoes are available in multiple widths and should have a system for adjusting the fit such as laces or straps with hook-and-loop fasteners. Slip-on or “loafer” shoes are not recommended for diabetics because their fit cannot be adjusted as the foot swells over the course a day. A good fit is essential to limit the amount of movement of the foot within the shoe.
- Stabilize and protect the foot.
Diabetic shoes should have reinforced toe boxes, stiff heel counters, and semi-rigid shank reinforcements to protect the foot from impacts and to help keep the foot in a neutral position.
- Select shoes that match the size and shape of your feet. That sounds simple enough but too often shoes that pinch or bind end up on our feet because fit and comfort take a back seat to style or price. Make sure your shoes have adequate room in the toe area; a minimum of about 3/8” of space between the end of the longest toe and the inside of the toe box is necessary. The heel must fit snugly. Make sure the sides of the shoe are high enough to give a secure feeling without irritating the ankle.
- Feel inside the shoe with your hand to see if there are any seams or lumps that could cause abrasion or irritate your feet.
- Make sure the lacing or strap system can be opened wider to allow for swelling of the feet.
- The upper materials in diabetic shoes should be supple and breathable. A good quality full grain leather upper is an excellent choice, will last long, and protects the foot while allowing it to breath. Upper linings with anti-microbial characteristics can help create a healthy environment for your feet.
- Walk a few paces in the shoes. Make sure your foot moves through the gait cycle comfortably without catching the toe. The best diabetic shoes are comfortable straight from the box and should require only minimal “breaking in”. A radiused heel and generous toe spring allow for a comfortable gait and help reduce the potential for tripping.