Dr. Marlene Reid was featured on Good Day Chicago for April Foot Health Awareness month. She spoke on the long term damage that can be expected when high heels are worn frequently. Nearly 50 percent of women surveyed have high heels and of those, 70 percent said they have heel pain. So why are high heels worn at all if there’s so much pain? The answer is no surprise if you ask anyone who has a favorite pair of 4 inch heels! High heels regardless of age or body type make you feel sexy, and confident. No matter what your occupation, heels make you feel good.
High heel shoes can range in height, so are there any precautions that should be taken with wearing higher heels?
The higher the heel, the higher the pitch, which means more weight sits onto the ball of the foot. As a result, the tissues and ligaments in the feet wear down and can even tear over time. Frequently wearing high heels also contracts your Achilles tendon which can make wearing other shoes more difficult.
Another risk is losing balance when wearing high heels which can lead to ligament tears or even broken ankles. The APMA has said that there have been over 123,000 injuries reported to the emergency room that are related to high heel use.
So what could be done to help reduce pain related to high heels?
Rest: Listen to your feet… If you’re experiencing heel pain, give both your feet and high heel shoes an indefinite hiatus.
Time: Reduce the amount of time spent wearing high heels.
Change the Height: Use different shoes with varied heel heights to reduce the Achilles tendon from constantly being in a contracted state.
Consider Different Shoes: Find safer alternative shoes that are more comfortable to wear.