High Heels: the Hidden Health Risks
29th OF October 2012
We love a good high heel as much as the next girl, especially during spring racing season. Unfortunately, high heels bring with them high health risks that many women choose to ignore so Brenden Brown, Vice President of the Australian Podiatry Association, is urging women to watch their step this Spring Racing season.
By Chloe Schneider
Brown says, “At the races the mixture of alcohol and high heels can be a recipe for disaster where the risk of falling over, twisting an ankle or jarring your back is high. I see too many cases of women who have done some serious damage all for the sake of their heels.”
If you do happen to suffer a fall, take your shoes off, keep off your feet and seek treatment at a podiatrist as soon as possible.
Brown goes on to explain that heels can age our feet, explaining, “Your tendons tighten up, so your toes become like claws to keep balance. Your calves may look fantastic, but your feet are going to look like a 90-year-olds in no time at all.”
To prevent this, only wear heels for special occasions and have your feet checked at the podiatrist regularly to limit the damage you are causing.
Pointed toe shoes and high heels are also a major cause of ingrown toenails – one of the most common conditions podiatrists treat. Ingrown toenails occur when the corner or side of the nail grows into the skin, causing redness, swelling, pain and infection. It’s a painful condition that, if left untreated, can require surgery.
Follow these tips from Brenden Brown to help prevent ingrown toenails;
- Trim your nails straight across the top, NOT in a rounded shape
- Avoid wearing shoes or socks that squeeze your toes together
- Avoid wearing high heels every day – mix up your footwear
- Ensure your shoes fit properly
- Wash your feet daily with soap and water to keep them clean then dry them thoroughly and apply foot cream – not body lotion
- Use a foot file or pumice stone to remove hard skin on a regular basis
- Change your socks and tights every day so feet remain clean
This Melbourne Cup day, don’t be a true fashion victim – look after your feet! And if you do develop a toenail issue or have a fall, visit a podiatrist immediately. The sooner you address the problem, the easier it will be to fix.
Shoes pictured: Innovare Made in Italy "Bethany" fuchsia floral silk shoes RRP $389.95
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