Awful Things That Can Happen When You Wear Heels Often

Writer: Farah Karim

When they say “Beauty is pain”, this phrase rings true for most of us. From spending tons of money on cosmetic products to shaving every week and even doing some body modifications, women suffer a whole ton for beauty. The one thing that we can unanimously agree on to be the most painful, and yet the most essential, is wearing heels.

Even kitten heels can cause damage for those who aren’t used to the tip-toes and aching feet. But the wildest thing is that we still wear them even though we know we’re going to suffer. How much exactly are we suffering for the sake of beauty?

Source: Dellon Thomas/Pexel

How does high heels affect our body?

First of all, we need to understand what exactly happens when we wear heels. Naturally, when we wear heels, we’ll try to maintain our balance as our bodies aren’t used to the extra height under the heels of our feet. In order to maintain balance, our knees, calves, hips and back muscles tense more intensely. Over time, this change in movement will cause our muscles to cramp and strain.

Simply put, wearing heels regularly can lead to foot issues like joint problems in your bones and muscles. If things get serious enough, you might even need surgery to fix these problems.

But that’s not all. Even wearing heels occasionally can lead to problems. You’re still at risk for bunions, hammertoes and other serious foot injuries. While it might take longer (say, 10 years) compared to an every day wearer, there’s still some damage being done. According to Jacqueline Sutera, a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association, she says that if you’re someone who isn’t strong, overweight or borrowing a pair of your friend’s shoes that don’t really fit, you could see serious damage in the future.

Source: Godisable Jacob/Pexel

What can we do to minimise it?

You can’t avoid the pain when it comes to heels, but you can lower the negative effects of these fashion must-haves with these simple tips.

1. Resting periods

Avoid wearing heels for long periods of time and take them off whenever you can. Maybe wear flats to work and switch to heels when you arrive. It’s also a good idea to pay attention to how long you’ve been walking in them. Generally, no more than three hours is a good amount of time to save your feet from potential damages.

2. Stretching

Stretching your leg muscles before and after putting them on is a good idea too. Like athletes, we need to prepare our bodies from the extreme and while wearing heels may not seem that extreme, it’s good to take precaution than to take things for granted. It’ll not only warm up your muscles before you put the pair on but also give your feet and calves a little relief from the soreness.

3. Wear insoles

Gel insoles are life-savers. They not only prevent your toe from scrunching while walking around but they also prevent blisters. There are different types of insoles for all kinds of feet sizes. From insoles that are shaped in an arch to keep pressure off your foot to insoles that hold the ball of your feet in place, they’re cheap and easy solutions to the problems that heel wearers have to deal with daily.

4. Change the height of the heel

Since the weight carried and pressure placed on our feet depend on the height of heels — wearing wedges or heels that are two inches or less would be more ideal. The platform of wedges can help to reduce the incline and take the pressure away from the ball of your foot.

The next time you’re wearing heels to dinner or a girls night out, don’t forget to give your feet some TLC (Tender Loving Care) after a whole day of walking around. Your feet will thank you in the future!