Compared to other purchases, shoes warrant a lot of thought and consideration. Wearing improper footwear is directly linked to foot pain and can turn into debilitating foot conditions. These conditions range from musculoskeletal pain (pain in the joints, muscles, ligaments and bones) to debilitating skin and nail issues. In other words, forcing your feet to operate in an inhospitable environment is a recipe for disaster!
Let’s take a look at how your bad shoes are causing you discomfort, and learn about some of the best solutions for foot pain and footwear-related health tips.
Why Does Improper Footwear Cause Foot Pain?
Research suggests that between 63 and 72% of people with foot pain wear shoes that are too small, too narrow and too cramped in the toe box. They also often lack the right amount of arch support, cushioning and protection from the ground’s impact. Studies also show that wearing poor shoes for decades can be a major reason why seniors experience foot pain today!
In a nutshell, inadequate footwear can ultimately disrupt the biomechanics of the feet, resulting in persistent pain and potential long-term damage.
Foot Conditions and Wearing Improper Footwear
From severe toenail pain, to dull aches, to nagging skin irritation, bad shoes can cause pain in more ways than one. Here are just a few issues you may be struggling with today:
- Bunions and Hammertoes: Caused by narrow toe boxes and high heels.
- Plantar fasciitis: Caused or contributed to by a lack of arch support.
- Ingrown toenails: Can occur due to tight and narrow shoes that disrupt normal nail growth patterns.
- Blisters: Due to a lack of cushioning and excessive rubbing against the skin.
- Achilles Tendonitis: Contributed to by inadequate heel and arch support.
- Diabetic foot: Ill-fitting shoes can lead to an increase in vulnerable pressure points, reduced blood circulation, and heightened risk of foot ulcers.
Revamping Footwear and Foot Health Tips
There are a few different ways to find comfortable footwear. First, you can try a shoe fitting service at Feet First Clinic. A staff member will guide you through available options and answer any questions you may have (staff members at regular shoe stores are often unable to answer these questions properly!).
If you choose to venture out on your own entirely, check out this checklist before you go shopping!
Lastly, you can double up on protection by investing in custom orthotics and wearing them with shoes that come with removable insoles.