Unless you’re a free spirit or a full-time beach dweller, chances are you’re going to wear shoes from time to time. But not all shoes are created equal—the best shoes can keep your feet healthy and provide them with proper support and alignment, while the worst shoes can set your feet back years, causing pain, discomfort, and structural damage.
In this blog, The Dallas podiatrists and AllCare Foot & Ankle Center will talk about the worst shoes for your feet, and how the shoes you wear can either raise or lower the risk of foot and ankle ailments.
THE WORST OF THE WORST
No surprise here—high heels are, by far, the worst shoes for your feet—perhaps worse than going barefoot altogether. High heels originated way back in the 1500s (for men and women) and have since grown into a symbol of female empowerment and eroticism. But regardless of their social and cultural relevance, they can do a great deal of damage to your feet—biologically and cosmetically.
By placing the heel higher than the toe, all the force of your weight is shifted to the toes, pressing them downward and increasing the likelihood of developing bunions (a bony bump on the big toe), hammertoes (when a toe is permanently bent downward), and ingrown toenails. Throw in a genetic predisposition for developing these conditions, and you’re almost guaranteed to have some sort of foot problem if you wear high heels regularly.
But the problems don’t stop there. Wearing high heels for years, decades, or an entire lifetime places extreme stress on the ankles and toes, which can cause tendonitis in the ankle, spurs and pinched nerves in the heel (Morton’s neuroma), and even stress fractures of bones of the foot. This doesn’t even factor in the idea that every time you wear heels, you’re just asking for a sprained ankle.
Ultimately, high heels can (and will) cause problems for your feet if worn too often. Save those heels for special occasions, and make more supportive shoes your go-to for everyday use.
While high heels will always be atop our list of the worst shoes for your feet, flips flops come in a close second. While we could complain all day about how the slapping sound of flip flops is one of the most annoying parts of the human experience—the negative effects they can have on your body are much more bothersome.
While they make for great locker room shower shoes, flip-flops offer little to no arch support, which can cause or aggravate plantar fasciitis, and can contribute to pain, discomfort, and misalignment of your neck, back, and hips.
The lesson here? Save your flip-flops for the locker room and the beach, and stick to more supportive for everyday use.
What do flip-flops and flats have in common? No support, plantar fasciitis, and spine-related ailments. You get the idea.
Shoes That Don’t Fit Right
According to WebMD, nine out of 10 women are wearing shoes that are too small. While there’s no way to figure out if this “statistic” is valid or not, an important fact remains: women (and men) who wear shoes that are too small run a higher risk of developing calluses, corns, bunions, and blisters due to the constant rubbing of tight shoes against the toes and feet. Ill-fitting shoes can also increase the risk for arthritis as well. The bigger problem here? Some kids are spending lifetimes wearing ill-fitting shoes, which can put them at risk for foot-related problems and developmental deformities as they grow older.
Learn More From Your Dallas Podiatrist
If you’re concerned about how your shoes are affecting your feet, or what kinds of shoes you should wear to protect to them, pay a visit to the podiatrists at AllCare Foot & Ankle Center. With years of experience and the best in podiatric care, we can help you find the best solutions for your feet and your lifestyle—and with locations in Arlington and Dallas proper, getting the care you need is easier than ever before! Schedule an appointment with AllCare Foot & Ankle Center today!