Offensive Footwear

They get you where you need to be, but if your shoes are hurting your feet, it’s time to move on.

Every morning, you slip them on and start into your daily routine. You may consider them nothing more than protection for the bottom of your feet or your toes, but shoes do a lot more than that. They ought to support your foot, from the first step you take in the morning until you take off your shoes in the evening.

If you’re not wearing the right footwear, however, your feet can suffer pain and suffering that can leave a lasting impression. Thankfully, you can keep your feet happy by avoiding a few of the most damaging types of footwear.

Offender 1: High Heels

This one is probably a bit obvious, but if you wear the tallest heels you can get your hands on, your feet are going to pay the price. Problems from wearing tall high heels include foot pain, potential damage to your Achilles tendon, and difficulty walking. And each step you take that requires modification to stay on your feet causes your gait to change. This can then result in excessive wear and tear on your hips, knees, and back. Don’t have an option to high heels? Keep them no taller than two inches, put them on at the last minute, and take them off as soon as possible.

If the Shoe Fits. The next time you’re out buying shoes, keep this tip in mind. If it’s not comfortable right now, it’s not going to be comfortable later. Save your feet from suffering by moving on to a pair of shoes that feels good from the first time you slip them on.

Offender 2: Flip-Flops

When you’re at the beach or lazing by the pool, nothing says comfort and flexibility like a good pair of flip-flops. The only problem is the wide range of problems that can come your way as a result. From scratched feet to pain from a lack of support to broken toes, wearing flip-flops at the wrong times come at a price. So while there’s nothing wrong with wearing them at the right times, wearing them on a daily basis, while you have to chase down your kids or are walking the dog, is a bad idea.

Offender 3: Backless Shoes

Also known as mules, backless shoes come with many of the same issues as flip-flops. There is the constant risk of having these shoes fall off, and as a result, you’re constantly working your toes to keep them on. While you may think this would be a good workout for you feet, the result can be anything but good. Do this keep-my-shoes-on shuffle enough, and you could suffer hammertoes – a condition in which your toes are deformed and stuck in a position with a downward arch. If this painful condition doesn’t get you, you’re still at increased risk for blisters and calluses where the shoe smacks into your heel with each step.

Offender 4: Cute Flats

Have a thing for those cute ballet flats? You’re not alone. Unfortunately, these shoes that put your feet nearly in contact with the ground come at a cost. Because they are so flat and lack support, they can cause many of the problems that are present with flip-flops. Common issues include pain in the front of the leg (tendonitis) or the heel (plantar fasciitis). Can’t say no to ballet flats? Find a pair in which you can slip a shoe insert.

Offender 5: Pointy Pumps

Like cramming your feet into the smallest possible spaces? Then there’s no reason to wear point-toes shoes – ever. They hurt while you wear them and can leave you with long-term conditions. One of the issues you may wind up dealing with as a result of pointy shoes is inflammation of the nerves in your feet. Most often the inflammation causes a burning sensation and pain in the toes, and surgery may be required to correct the problem. Now you have to ask yourself: Is fashion really worth it?

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