September 2010 – Patient Sympathy

August 2010 – Back to School Shoewear

July 2010 – Womens Shoewear

June 2010 – Summer Foot Care

May 2010 – Skin

April 2010 – Ingrown Toenails

March 2010 – Barefoot Running

February 2010 – Pediatric Flatfoot

January 2010 – Being a Compliant Patient

December 2009 – Raynaud’s Disease

November 2009 – NA

October 2009 – Shin Splints

September 2009 – Dealing with Corns and Callouses

August 2009 – Relieving Painful Gout

July 2009 – Caring for Plantar Warts

June 2009 – Bunions

May 2009 – Children's Heel Pain

March/April 2009 – Heel Pain

February 2009 – Shoe Fitting

January 2009 – Nail Fungus

December 2008 – Neuroma

November 2008 – Diabetic Foot Care


July 2010

Published in - Healthy Lifestyles

Corns, Callouses, bunions and hammertoes, women and shoes. I know what you’re thinking. ‘He’s going to go on a rampage about women wearing bad shoes’. No, not really. As any frequent purchaser of shoes will tell you, there are no bad shoes, only bad choices in sizes and styles. I am referring more to length and width. It is these two areas that cause most of the pedal issues that are so common. Tight and/ or narrow shoes can and do cause the dreaded bunions and hammertoes by squeezing the toes to a point. Rounded toe boxes are better.

The bad choices can cause you to experience the pain of the first four items listed above. And then some. Women aren’t the only ones who suffer with bad feet but they are the mainly the ones who exacerbate their conditions, if they have one, with wearing the wrong shoes. For them. I’m not speaking about a pair not matching the belt or pocketbook. Of course, no one would knowingly violate this rule.

First things first:
Always wear activity appropriate shoewear.
Always wear well-fitting shoes. Too loose or too tight will cause you blight.
Never wear someone else’s shoes-unless of course you don’t mind itchy, scaling, dry skin and possibly fungus in you nails.

• Since it is the summer let’s begin with flip-flops, sandals and water shoes. All are protective and have their place. Older people unsteady in their gait, I do not recommend any of them, especially in a home with many obstacle such as area rugs that can be tripped over. For younger persons go crazy but beware, blow-outs do occur and straps have been known to spontaneously snap or rub and cause blisters. For children all are fine if you can convince them to keep their feet shod. Besides, parents will be hard-pressed to keep any type of footwear on their little tykes feet during this time. Let them go without them, it’s good for their muscular development.

• 1-2” Heels- Relatively safe and usually not a problem for most issues. Helpful for heel spurs and plantar Fasciitis. Casual

•3-4” Heels- Sure they look great and go well with that outfit but can exacerbate painful bunions or hammertoes and increase their deformity. Can cause Morton’s neuroma, an inflammation of a nerve usually due to ill-fitting shoes of this category.

•Flats-Excellent for casual and office settings but may need some arch support if on your feet for extended time. Anyone who has no pedal issues this is a great choice.

•Uggs- No support. None. Nada. Niente. OK for short periods not spent on your feet. Anyone working in retail and wearing these, good luck. I’ll reserve a spot on the schedule for an injection for heel pain.

•Crocs- I find mixed reviews via patients. You either love ‘em or hate ‘em. Too clunky for me, but then again I’m somewhat clumsy to begin with. Some find great support, others not so much.

•Clogs or Mules-Usually great support, solid construction and can get them in a wide or XW.

•Sketcher Shape Up Shoes-Good for most for walking but not good for everyone. Those who have a tight posterior leg muscles (hamstrings, calf, Achilles) and lower back may find these quite uncomfortable due to straining/ pulling of these muscle groups.

•Sneakers-Walking sneakers are for exactly that, walking. Running sneakers same thing. Activity or sport specific is important. They are made a certain way due to the pounding or stress forces applied to various areas and directions of the shoe

Bottom line, each of the above are okay for a particular population. I am not for or against any type of shoe in particular. It is patient or person dependent. Some individuals need no additional support in their shoewear. Others, like myself (during the day only) have a need for a custom or an OTC insert or we pay the price later on with painful feet, ankles and knees.

However, if you have a podiatric concern and continuously wear any of the above and have problems, don’t be surprised if a physician recommends a change in shoe wear. It may also be for a short period of time to allow whatever ails you calm down. Some can return to their favorite foot wear but may just need to adjust up, or down a size. Or two.