Having trouble drifting off when your head hits the pillow? The problem might be with your feet.
When our lower extremities get cold, our blood circulation drops. When we warm our feet, we send a signal to our brain that it’s time for sleep.
One of the easiest ways to keep our feet warm, of course, is by sleeping while wearing socks, such as our thermal diabetic socks.
It’s the easiest and safest way to keep warm, as methods such as hot water bottles, heating pads or electric blankets can lead you to become overheated or cause burns.
This is especially important for people with diabetes, as you might have less sensitivity in your feet and not notice when you’ve sustained a burn.
The benefits of sleeping with socks on
In addition to keeping you warm so you can get to sleep, wearing thermal diabetic socks to bed offers some other benefits:
- Prevent cracked, dry skin – Keep your heels from drying out by moisturizing them before bed then slipping on a pair of cotton socks.
- Reduce hot flashes – For some women, socks help cool their body’s core temperature.
- Raynaud’s reduction – People with Raynaud’s disease experience swelling and a loss of circulation in their fingers and toes. By wearing socks to bed, you can keep your blood circulation and prevent attacks from this ailment.
What else can I do to improve circulation?
In addition to wearing thermal diabetic socks to bed, you can help improve circulation by:
- Getting exercise
- Drinking plenty of water
- Avoiding smoking and fatty foods
- Eating a healthy, low-cholesterol diet
Sleep and diabetes
Wherever diabetes goes, sleep issues can soon follow. In fact, it works both ways: people with diabetes can have trouble sleeping, and lack of sleep may put you at greater risk for developing diabetes.
When we don’t get enough sleep, we may eat more than we would otherwise to gain energy. This can cause our blood sugar levels to increase and make it even harder to get enough sleep the following night, and so on and so on…
There are studies that suggest people who get less sleep tend to be heavier than people who sleep well. And people who are obese or overweight are at a greater risk for becoming diabetic.
This doesn’t mean that people with diabetes should automatically expect their sleep to be disrupted. It has more to do with the symptoms of the illness.
For example, higher blood sugar levels can lead to frequent urination, which can mean getting up during the night to use the bathroom.
And when your body has an excess of glucose, it saps water from your tissues, leaving you dehydrated and wanting that middle-of-the-night glass of water.
People with low blood sugar can also see their sleep disrupted due to symptoms like dizziness, sweating and shaking.
If you have diabetes and would like to know more about proper foot care, Creative Care can help. We’ve spent the last four decades working with people who have diabetes to make sure they’re wearing the right socks.