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The feet are the most used part of the body, thus, stress builds up leading to foot problems that may be reduced by a proper foot massage. Biggest foot problem diabetic patients face is diabetic peripheral neuropathy. If you have diabetes, you can be massaged by a professional therapist but having your own foot massager at home is more economical in terms of saving you cash and time. When purchasing a foot massager, make sure to get the best that will help alleviate foot pain, fatigue, and stress.
Benefits of using a Diabetic Foot Massager
- It helps in regulating blood flow in diabetic patients. The rubbing eases blood clot as well as enabling you be in a happy mood.
- Daily use lowers high blood pressure which occurs when you engage in stressful activities. This is achieved by lowering head aching hence eradicating high blood pressure.
- It boosts how varicose veins appears by ensuring blood circulates properly and improving your heart condition.
- Due to loss of sensation, massaging the feet helps diabetic patients feel their feet again. This mostly occurs if you sit down for long or fail to exercise.
- Eradicates foot complications such as foot ulcers
- It helps you relax and heal
- It relieves stiffness and muscle weakness therefore enabling you to move around without any problem.
What is Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy and how is it caused by diabetes?
This a condition where one losses the nerve fiber function mostly experienced by diabetic patients. When a diabetic patient eats a lot of sugar, then the high amount of glucose causes a metabolic reaction producing sinister molecules known as advanced glycation end-product. They bind with elastin fibers found in blood vessels and as they accumulate, its diameter reduces hence interfering with blood flow. This cuts supply of blood to your feet and hands, therefore, causing pain on the nerves and tissues. Also, don’t forget to buy the best diabetic shoes for men and women to help your legs have the best relief and shield during the day.
-tingling or freezing sensation
-needles and pins
-weak muscles and lack of coordination
-Lack of balance
Other symptoms that may occur include: feeling dizzy, change in digestion, blood pressure and not being able to withstand heat. When blood flows poorly, then it becomes harder for a wound to heal. Some of these wounds maybe unnoticed due to lack of sensation and may result to severe infection or even amputation when it becomes so severe.
Using a Foot Massager to Treat Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy
When blood circulation is interfered with then peripheral neuropathy arises. This is obstructed by the metabolic reaction denying the muscles and nerves of the feet and hands enough blood. Taking medications may not completely eradicate this but rather help manage it. The topical and oral medications or laser therapies will help patients with diabetes feel more comfortable if they have peripheral neuropathy. However, massage has been found to be the most effective method in managing neuropathy.
In massage therapy, pressure from an electric massager or hands of a therapist helps relieve pain and improving blood circulation in the joints, nerves, muscles or ligaments. For most patients, visiting a professional therapist may be expensive and consume a lot of time. To address this, there are available foot massagers in the market today you can purchase and use them at the comfort of your seat.
The best thing about a foot massager is that you don’t need the help of anyone and you can use it at any time you want. Using a foot massager helps increase blood flow in the nerves, hence, eradicating pain, numbness as well as other symptoms. Although conducting foot massage may not completely eliminate the symptoms, it helps in managing them to enable you live a comfortable and healthier life. Also, wear recommended footwear such as cheap diabetic slippers to keep your feet protected.
Features to look for in a foot massager
Foot massagers come in two main designs which are open and closed. Open design massager enables you to place your feet on the deck comfortably. They are silent, portable, lightweight and very stable making your feet settle on it comfortably. It massages your soles well but not the calves, ankles, arches or your heels. They are easy to maintain.
A closed design massager massages the soles, aches, sides and also your heels. It uses many massage techniques to give perfect results. They are easy to handle but cost high to maintain. Some are controlled with a remote, can accommodate all users and allow you to personalize each session to suit your needs and mood.
A portable foot massager for diabetic neuropathy allows you to carry it from one place to another within or outside your house. It should be lightweight and able to fit into a bag if you are planning to use it away from home. The open design models fits into a bag easily unlike the closed design models.
- Size and weight
The foot massager size will tell if you can or cannot use it. There are those that can accommodate up to 14 feet. If you have large feet then pick one with extra space but if your feet are small then avoid ones for people with large feet. The massager should fit perfectly so that it can touch each side of your feet. Weigh influences its stability and portability although it is not more important. A heavier model is more stable compared to a lighter one during a massage session.
The design of a massager determines its stability. Open design models tend to be more stable than closed ones since they are wide and low. Its feet also impacts stability with small rubber made feet preventing the massager from slipping. Adjustable feet models allow you to adjust the height especially when sitting on a sofa and enable you to incline it. To avoid damaging it, never stand up with your feet on top of it or push it hard against the surface.
This will determine the legs and feet that can be massaged at a go. Some massages only the foot by targeting the soles. The foot and ankle application massagers mostly found in closed design models are tall and cover the foot soles and the ankle massaging them thoroughly. Lastly is the foot, calf and ankle application that massages all the three parts. Some of the open design models allow you to tilt them in order to touch on the ankles and calves. This relieves muscle tension.
The type of massage features
These are differentiated by the features of a massager which determines what massage to administer. The type of massage a massager offers will dictate what kind of a massager you will buy.These massage features include:
- Oscillating massageis done with an open design model where you place the feet on top of it at pressure points. This improves blood circulation and relieves muscle tension.
- Kneading massageis provided by open and closed models uses massage heads spinning clockwise and anticlockwise massaging the feet soles.
- Air pressure massageis found in closed design models to work on your arch and side muscles of the feet. To achieve this, you need to inflate and deflate the airbags on your massager.
- Heated massage feature is found on most models. Some produce warm sensation while some produce strong heat. The strong heat is not recommended for those who have no sensation. This feature is relaxing and makes you feel comfortable and cozy when cold as the heat spreads on your soles. It also improves blood flow.
- Shiatsu massage is performed by open and closed models. Pressure is applied to various parts of the feet hence stimulating and relaxing the muscles as well as improving blood circulation.
Foot massage is the best therapy every diabetic patients should have since they are more vulnerable to foot problems such as Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy. Before buying a foot massager, make sure you consult your doctor who will recommend on whether you can use it or not. Once recommended, it is crucial that you find the best foot massager that will suit you. We advise you to pick one that fosters circulation by not applying more pressure on the skin as this may destroy it and it should contain customized diabetic needs. For whatever foot massager you settle for, ensure that medical professionals have tested and approved it. Also, ensure that you wear creswell diabetic socks to enhance circulation of blood.