Shoe Choice Affects Foot Health for Women

At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we treat many women with foot problems that could have been avoided by choosing different shoes. Today, there are many attractive shoe designs that do not harm your feet. Short-term fashion choices can lead to long term foot health problems. Below are 3 types of shoes to avoid:

  1. High heels—shoes with high heels (2 inches or more) can cause a host of foot problems. First, the height of the heel can cause wobbling and instability which results in ankle sprains. High heels put extra strain on the muscles and ligaments of the ankle as they struggle to keep your foot in proper position. Continuing to wear high heels after a sprain is likely to set up a dangerous cycle of repeated sprains, increased weakness and eventually chronic ankle instability and pain. In addition, the design of high heels forces your toes forward, causing them to spend long hours cramped and squeezed. This increases the risk of bunions, hammertoes and other toe deformities.
  2. Stiff backed pumps—shoes with an overly hard heel counter can lead to a condition commonly referred to as “pump bump.” Officially known as Haglund’s deformity, a hard, bony enlargement forms on the back of the heel. When the back of pump rubs against the growth it causes irritation and inflammation. In some cases the bursa sac surrounding the deformity can become inflamed causing bursitis.
  3. Flip-flops—yes, these are comfortable and oh-so-easy to slip on and off but flip flops provide no support whatsoever for your feet. This increases the risk of your feet coming out of the shoe and getting cut or scraped and also the chances of twisting an ankle. The one exception to this is in gyms, public pools, spas and other places where covering your feet prevents contact with fungi and bacteria that can cause athlete’s foot, fungal toenail and

If a part of your foot, toe or ankle is causing you pain or you notice other symptoms such as bruising, swelling or redness, contact our Long Beach office for an appointment by calling: 562-420-9800. Our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley and Dr. Constance Omelas will examine your feet and prescribe the correct treatment (in addition to changing your shoes) to relieve pain and prevent further injury.