The Health Risks of High Heels
From those sky-high heels to casual-wear heels, these shoes have been a staple in female fashion wardrobes for years. While the style of wearing heels is not going anywhere, women that wear heels may be exposing themselves to unknown health risks. Heels are among the most common culprits for injuries and chronic pain in women.
The Real Risks of Heels
Women that wear their heels all the time will have more foot problems and pain than women that only wear them occasionally. These problems need correctional treatment by a foot specialist in Calgary, and you should see one soon if you face any of these conditions:
- Significant foot pain
- Misshapen hammertoes
More importantly, wearing heels can begin to shorten the muscles in your calves that lead up to your back; eventually causing muscle spasms and pain. Most women wearing heels daily have a shortened Achilles tendon because as the heel is pointed upwards, the tendon tightens. Stretching it back out is not only painful, but could cause plantar fasciitis.
How to Prevent Problems from High Heels
Most women that wear heels refuse to give them up, even if they cause pain. To avoid developing foot pain or other problems, there are things you can do to keep yourself healthy and fashionable, including:
- Being Sensible - Try to wear low heels if you wear them daily. Keeping them an inch or lower. The heel base also needs to be wide enough to spread the load. Stiletto-type heels do not offer any support and three inches or more could shorten your Achilles tendon when worn daily.
- Add Insoles - Soft insoles can help reduce the impact the heels have on your knees.
- Wear Heels When Appropriate - If you are going to walk around or have a lot of standing during the waking hours, wear heels that are comfortable. Only wear your ultra-high heels when you will be sitting or not wearing them for prolonged periods of time.
- Stretch - A podiatrist in Calgary can give you a list of stretches that will prevent a shortening of the Achilles tendon as well as prevent your muscles from seizing up. Practice picking up a pencil on the floor with your toes or do stretches while standing that involve putting the weight onto the balls of your feet, and then pressing down at the heel to stretch out the calves.
If your feet are experiencing constant aches and pains, you may need to see a specialist. Dalhousie Station Foot Clinic offers expert care for women to wear high heels regularly. You can get treatment for chronic pain and also preventative care so that you may still continue to wear those heels, but appropriately and without pain.