When Your Shoes Cause Troubles
Every woman treasures at least a pair of shoes above the rest of her collection. Maybe, some even have a dozen. However, some look awkward in their favorite shoes. Unfortunately, there are people who squeeze their big feet in tiny shoes. There are many women who don’t really feel comfortable in their favorite skyscraper stilettos, pointy-toed pumps, open-backed clogs and ballet flats that lack arch support. Some who wear these shoes end up damaging their nerves and getting ugly calluses.
Maybe, it’s time to rethink what your feet are wearing. Podiatrist Andrew Shapiro, spokesman for the American Podiatric Medical Association, cites the following types of shoes as the most troublesome.
Every woman knows that spike heels can strain their feet. But some women still wear them anyway. The question is how high the heels should be. According to Shapiro, it should not exceed two inches, otherwise, problems may occur.
The Achilles tendon can shorten with the use of high heels, which can lead to Achilles tendonitis. Spike heels can also increase the pressure of the foot’s ball. This can deplete the fat below the ball of the feet. This condition can cause metatarsalgia, a severe pain in that area of the foot, which can develop into a chronic problem. Spike heels can also cause fractures due to too much pressure and misalignment of toes.
Having painful feet puts you in a difficult position. It may affect your other body parts. For instance, your gait will change, resulting to stress on knees, hips and back. Your body as a whole is thus affected when your feet are impaired.
Unless there is a special occasion, refrain from wearing shoes with high heels. If you do, consider wearing them off as you go home. Never combine a pointy toe with high heels. Wear gel cushion to provide your foot’s ball extra protection.
Shapiro is alarmed that many women wear flip-flops instead of shoes. Flip-flops are intended to be used at beach and at the pool. Wearing them every day can expose your feet to damages. Flip-flops have no arch support and offer minimum protection to feet.
Occasional strolling in flip-flops is fine, but women should be careful not to overuse the footwear, warns John Anderson, co-chair of the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society’s Public Education Committee and associate surgery professor at the University of Michigan College of Human Medicine. Anderson warns that flip-flops are not the right type of footwear for playing, running and jumping. There are a lot of injuries resulting from the improper use of flip-flops, he says.
When misused, flip-flops can lead to strained ankles, scraped feet and broken toes resulting from slipping, as well as plantar fasciitis, tendonitis and other chronic problems resulting from the absence of support.
To prevent these injuries, limit the use of flip-flops beyond their intended purposes and wear sandals instead. Sandals with straps keep your feet in place and offer better support.
What you experience in high heels is the opposite of what you get from wearing ballet shoes. Your feet lie flat on the ground rather than in steep angle. What is wrong with that?
Ballet flats do not give much foot support. They lack cushioning and prevent the normal functioning of the feet. They are better than flip-flops in protecting the feet, but ballet flats can also cause foot injuries like plantar fasciitis and tendonitis due to lack of support. Ballet flats should not be used every day.
The better option is a type of flat with real sole and protective mechanism for the heel counter. Shoes that can be folded up just like a slipper do not offer much support.
These shoes are as problematic as high heels and can even lead to worse injuries when they come in high heels as well.
Other than hammertoes and metatarsalgia, this type of shoe can lead to hammer neuroma, which is manifested by nerve inflammation in toes. The third and fourth toes are more susceptible to neuroma, but this condition could also affect other toes. Pinched nerves bring pain and burning sensation. Treatment options include injection and, in worst cases, surgery.
Avoid these inconveniences by choosing shoes with a wider toe box. There is no way to improve pointy-toed pumps, so why wear them? If you cannot help yourself wearing this type of shoe, just do it occasionally.
There are many problems that can result from wearing backless mules. Many women get hammertoes due to backless mules (their toes end up grabbing the shoes for support). Calluses and skin lesions can result as well when the shoes are constantly tapping the heels.
Given these drawbacks, it seems that the best options are those very comfy athletic shoes. Unfortunately, you cannot wear them every day when you go to office or even during special occasions like a wedding or a date.
The ideal daily footwear are those with heels not exceeding 1.5 inches and footwear with good heel and arch support and wide toe box. Do not forget the lace or strap if you are after a sandal. The rule of thumb is simple: wear shoes you are most comfortable with.