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Which diabetic socks to choose ?

The diabetic foot deserves all the attention it can get. It must be meticulously "inspected" morning and evening. Prevention is the key word when you have diabetes. And the choice of socks for diabetic feet, like the choice of shoes, is an important element in this prevention and in reducing the risks associated with this disease.


Diabetes and feet

Foot problems are common in people with diabetes. Over time, diabetes can lead to neuropathy, or nerve damage, which can cause tingling, pain, numbness and loss of feeling in the feet that can lead to sores.

Diabetes can also restrict blood flow to the feet, which can make it difficult for wounds and sores to heal. To combat these painful side effects and thus improve quality of life, diabetic patients should use special socks that minimize irritation and promote circulation.


Diabetic socks are specially designed to keep feet dry, reduce the risk of foot injuries and improve circulation. They are a key component of foot care.


Diabetic foot comfort sock: Who is it for ?

Not everyone with diabetes needs diabetic socks. For those who do not have foot problems, ordinary comfortable, non-binding, well-fitting socks are sufficient, although it may be advisable to wear compression socks during long journeys, as prolonged sitting can increase the risk of oedema or blood clots.


Patients who would benefit from always wearing diabetic-only socks are those who :

  • have experienced changes in foot colour or temperature, irritation, nerve damage, blisters or infections.
  • often have sweaty or wet feet
  • have a decreased pedal pulse (measured on the top of the foot and behind the inner ankle) associated with an increased risk of peripheral arterial disease 3 or other atherosclerosis.

Your doctor will be able to advise you to wear this type of device.


Why choose special diabetes socks ?

A small injury (blister, cut, etc.) is a major risk and can quickly degenerate if you have had poorly controlled diabetes for a long time.

Socks are ultimately as important as shoes, as they can also be responsible for injuries and complications due to overheating, shoe contact or creases.


How to choose ?

The material: Natural (cotton) or synthetic ?

We do not have a predefined opinion. In the most suitable models, both solutions exist and are quite satisfactory. On the other hand, it is better to avoid synthetic materials when opting for low-cost models.


Socks without elastic

It is important to choose a sock without elastic in order to have as little pressure as possible on the upper leg. This is especially important in the case of oedema. Most models are designed without elastic at the top and still hold up very well over time.



These are the real enemy of the diabetic foot. It is better to wear classic socks inside out than inside out to avoid seams. A model labelled "sock for diabetic feet" should not have any "raised" seams at the toes.


What about amputations ?

Complications of a diabetic wound can lead to amputation in serious cases that are not treated in time. In such cases it is difficult to find suitable socks. The aim is simple: to find a sock that fits the shape of the "stump", regardless of the length of the foot remaining after amputation.


Diabetic socks and compression stockings

Compression socks are not the same as diabetic socks, as they are intended to increase constriction, so that blood can flow back to the heart more easily. Medical grade compression socks are not suitable for people with diabetes, as they can reduce blood flow to the feet and accelerate damage.

However, if you have swollen feet, talk to your doctor: some diabetic socks offer a lighter degree of compression that can reduce swelling without inhibiting blood flow.



Socks selection sensitive feet


Author : Pierre Durrmann - Pedorthist and diabetic foot specialist