The Dangers of Wearing High Heels and How To Find Comfort

by Oct 30, 2020Fritzy Feet Tips0 comments

According to ancient history, the high heel was initially created for male horse riders to prevent their feet from slipping from the stirrups. It was not until the 1600s that women adopted the trend, and since then, high heels have been a staple in female wardrobes.

The heel has become the gold standard in women’s footwear for almost everything, including the board room and the red carpet. But while high heels are stylish and can make the feet look flattering, they can cause you significant problems.

Heels are among the top causes of foot and ankle complaints in many countries, but women still wear it with abandon, and it’s evident that the shoes are not going away anytime soon.

If you’ve noticed constant pain in your foot every time you wear your high heels, it will help if you understand the real cost of wearing high heels to convince you not to wear your favorite shoes every day.

The Dangers of Wearing Heels

The Dangers of Wearing Heels

Joint Pain

Unlike other types of shoes, heels don’t offer any significant shock absorption. Wearing heels also prevents your foot from naturally rotating as you walk since they’re strained in a straight and unbending position.

According to the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons, this can force the knee to absorb the force that comes with every step, leading to severe joint pain and a worsening of arthritis symptoms. Your ankle absorbs some of the shock as well, so expect a sore and stiff joint after a long day of wearing heels.

Callouses

When you wear too-tight shoes or shoes that force your feet into unnatural shapes (like pointy-toe shoes), you’re putting pressure on the sides of your feet and toes. Over time, this can lead to skin hardening, which can be embarrassing come summer when donning your strappy sandals.

Shortened Achilles Tendon

One of the most worrying side effects of wearing heels is the shortened Achilles tendon. According to Live Science, wearing heels over a long period can shorten your Achilles tendon. Because the heel is in the lifted position, it can cause a physiological change in the muscles and tendons around the ankles. This can cause you to feel immense pain and stretching when your heel reaches the ground when you’re barefoot or wearing flats.

Lower Back Pain

In most conferences and formal gatherings, wearing heels is a must. It’s the ultimate fashion statement for women as they are usually chic and sexy and can enhance your style quotient. However, comfort and stilettos do not go well together. The high heels do not provide complete support to your feet. When you’re wearing heels, your pelvis can push forward when you walk or stand, and the unequal distribution of weight can place tremendous pressure on your lower back, leading to soreness, inflammation, and lingering pain in your lower back.
Lower Back Pain

Lack of Cushion

When you wear heels, your body’s weight is placed on the ball of your foot, and your heel is only used for balance. Unfortunately, this can cause the natural padding you have on the ball of your foot to wear away or push away.

Some plastic surgeons even inject Botox into patients’ feet to add padding, making the heels more comfortable. They call this procedure the “stiletto lift.” Without the extra padding on the ball of your foot, you may feel immense discomfort and pain on your heels.

Falling and Sprained Ankles

When you wear flat shoes, your weight is distributed evenly between your heel and the ball of your foot, placing little pressure on your ankle. Unfortunately, wearing heels cause an immense imbalance between the heel and the ball, which forces your ankle to become the fulcrum for your entire body.

However, ankles aren’t used to taking that kind of pressure, so expect frequent falls and twisted or sprained ankles when wearing heels. It’s also almost impossible to have perfect balance when wearing very high heels, so any bump in the pavement can be potentially dangerous.

Ingrown Toenails

Most high-heeled shoes have a pointy or almond-shaped toe, even though the end of your foot is more square. As a result, the biggest and littlest toes take most of the pressure as they press against the sides and the shoe’s end.

Wearing high heels make your feet slide down and crush your toes, which can lead to ingrown toenails. You get ingrown toenails when the side of your toenail starts to grow into your flesh, which can be incredibly painful.

Constricted Blood Flow

High heel shoes make the feet appear longer and thinner. However, the shape of the shoe squeezes your foot into an unnatural and uncomfortable position, and the stress on your foot can result in a constricted blood flow. It may even cause the blood vessels to break over time or result in hammertoes.

Making Heels Safer and More Wearable

Making Heels Safer and More Wearable
The best way to prevent foot pain and problems is to avoid wearing high heels, but we’re well aware that many women prefer heels over more sensible shoes. If you want to keep wearing your heels, but you want to get rid of the discomfort, it’s a good idea to take some precautions.
  • Opt for a Platform Heel. If you’re obsessed with super high heels, try wearing thicker heels instead of stiletto to help distribute weight more evenly across the feet. A pair that features a platform through the front of the shoe is also a good choice. It provides the look of high heels but raises both the ball of the foot and the heel, placing less pressure on the ball.
  • Choose a Comfort Brand. One of the best ways to avoid the pain associated with high heels without sacrificing your style is to choose the type and brand of shoes you purchase carefully. There are already several high heels brands in the market that are both fashionable and comfortable for your feet. If you are in the Denver area, you can check out different shoe brands at Fritzy Feet.
  • Don’t Wear Heels Every Day. If you want to keep wearing high heeled shoes, make sure not to wear them every day to help prevent long term physical problems. It would also help limit the number of hours you wear your heels, so you know to use them only when an event or occasion won’t last long. If you’re going to do a lot of walking, dancing, or standing during the occasion, wear heels for only a few hours and then change into a stylish pair of flats. This will help save your back, joints, and tender toes from excruciating pain later.
  • Select Dressy Flats. If you think you can’t wear flats for more formal occasions, think again. Flats embellished with studs, lace, or bows are a great alternative to high heels, and they look cute with dresses, skirts, and skinny jeans.
  • Stretch Your Feet. If your feet are achy and sore after a long day of wearing heels, sit on your couch and place a golf ball or tennis ball under your foot. Roll the ball up and down your foot while applying pressure on it to relieve your tight muscles and tendons.
  • Add Orthopedic Pads. If your favorite heels lack support, your best option is to add orthopedic insoles or pads. Most high heels are slim and hard to fit, so thin gel pads will work wonders in giving you more support under the ball of your foot or throughout the entire sole and make your favorite shoes more wearable.
  • Use Custom Orthotics. Many podiatrists agree that the best and most effective way to reduce the force and avoid pain on the hell and the ball of the foot is to use a specialized custom orthotic. Custom orthotics will remove the pressure off your feet’ painful areas and provide extra cushion under the forefoot. Orthotics for high heels must be custom-made to fit the narrow shape and design of heels. You can come to see us for an orthotics consultation at the Fritzy Feet, and we can fit you for custom inserts.

There might not be any other shoes that can make your legs look nice or make you feel good besides heels. But, you don’t need to suffer for style. Fritzy Feet can help you feel comfortable while wearing the shoes you want. To get started, contact us at 303-343-4444 or send us a message at denver@fritzyfeet.com. You may also visit us at 2243 S Monaco Parkway, Suite 110, Denver, Colorado 80222. We carry a wide range of shoe brands that offer style and comfort.