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Why Are High Heels Bad For My Feet?

Tuesday, 29 June 2021 00:00

High heels are a popular choice for many people as they can make you look taller and make your legs appear longer, your feet smaller, and your body thinner. However, none of these perceived benefits are worth the damage to your feet and ankles that high heels can cause. Over time, wearing high heels can alter the muscle balance around the ankle joint, making the ankles weak and unstable, affecting your balance, and raising your risk of ankle sprains. The Achilles tendon may shorten and stiffen. In people who wear high heels often, the tendons can become so short and stiff that switching to flats causes calf pain. Even if you aren’t quite ready to give up your high heels, there are measures that you can take to prevent further damage and reduce your risk of injury. Look for high heels that are no taller than two inches and have thicker heels, alternate between high heels and flats often, wearing your high heels for no more than two or three days per week, and stretch your feet and ankles regularly. To learn more about the connection between footwear and foot health, please consult with a podiatrist.

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 New Tampa Foot & Ankle. 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?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • 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 Wesley Chapel and Tampa, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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