You may look great in those high heels or strappy sandals, but studies show that women who wear these types of shoes are at much higher risk of future heel and ankle pain. When you take a step, the foot absorbs a certain amount of shock from your body’s weight. Sneakers and other types of athletic shoes contain enough cushioning to handle the shock and protect the foot. However, this is generally not the case with women’s shoes, and for this reason women report heel and ankle pain in far larger numbers than do men. In fact, more than 60 percent of women who report hind foot pain have worn high heels and pumps at some point in their lives. Therefore, it is believed that past wearing of this type of shoe is a key factor in developing foot pain later in life. If you are having heel and ankle pain, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for guidance on proper footwear and other treatment options.
High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Norfolk Foot & Ankle Group. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Effects of High Heels on the Feet
High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal. Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.
Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?
- Ankle Joints
- Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
- Balls of the Feet
- Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
- Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain. The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.
What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?
- Morton’s Neuroma
- Plantar Fasciitis
How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?
If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems. Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet. Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising. If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work. Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, and Chesapeake, VA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.