Tuesday, October 22, 2013

How Much Damage Can High Heels Really Cause?

It’s no secret that wearing high heels for hours on end is less than comfortable. While they may look nice, the shoes leave feet pinched and prodded into their unnatural shapes. They then cause feet to ache, toes to cramp, and begin shooting some of those pains upwards into the legs and lower back. Perhaps even affecting posture.

And all in the name of beauty.

Of course, there are now “orthopedic” versions of heels – or at the very least, more expensive models that come with cushioning and extra support. But when the foot is resting at such an awkward angle – and then walked on – how comfortable can it really be? Not to mention the level of damage it’s causing in its wake.

Much depends on how long the wearer has been sporting her heels – for the span of the day or life. But according to some recent research, the ongoing damage could just be irreversible.

Foot Scan in High Heel

By scanning a foot still wearing a high heel, specialists were able to see just what shape the foot takes on. They found that the ball is pressed flat with the toes, which also supports the majority of the weight. The rest of the foot sits at an extreme incline, until reaching the heel, which hosts some weight, but still on a slant. The specialists also said that individual tests should be done to show just how much damage each woman has sustained. [ABC News]

Whether contained to stress within the foot, or having affected the legs and back, it’s clear that improper weight placement can cause ongoing pain and damage.

To lessen the effects, doctors say women should stick to flats. However, if heels are a must, wedge and platform versions provide more mid-foot support.