These Feet Are Made For Comfort
Studies show that on average we walk approximately 2,000 to 6,000 (between 1 and 3 miles) steps a day. This is what our feet look like. (PICTURE OF FOOT) This is what we like to put our feet in to take some of those steps. (PICTURE OF in appropriate shoe pointed tip SHOE) Now how unfair are we being to our feet. Then we wonder why they hurt after we start to mature (age), why we get more and more foot disorders as we get older? But it is after all those years of abuse. Our feet deserve respect (to be looked after) and in turn they will respect you (give you good service)
Footwear is usually looked upon as one of those accessories that we need. It serves to protect our feet from harm, and depending on our activities provide shock absorption, and comfort to help us through the day. But we usually let style take over and right now the style is the pointed tip shoe and unfortunately the average individual buys shoes for style and not comfort. Sometimes as a result of this we tend to purchase shoes and then give them away because they all of a sudden have become “uncomfortable”, or we grin and bare it because they were expensive and are in style so it is trendy. On the other side of that coin we have the individuals that try to wear comfortable shoes but either
- do not fit their shoes correctly so they cause foot pain and usually end up being upset because the shoe was expensive and hurt their feet. or
- in an attempt to find a comfortable shoe resort to what is locally called “health shoes”. When asked to describe them it is described as a shoe with the prongs in the soles.
It has become trendy to wear shoes with prongs commonly called health shoes for long periods of time but some people end up with damage to the soles of their feet as seen here.
A word of caution these shoes should be worn a maximum of 1 hour in any one day. They are to facilitate increasing of the blood supply to the foot which is an effect one gets from a massage. We do not have a full day massage for our body so why give our feet one.
We have to stop looking at style and look at comfort. It is important to be able to differentiate between the two and when they are needed the most.
It is also important to be able to choose the correct shoe for the occasion. Therefore comfort shoes should be the choice for work where we are in them for at least eight to ten hours a day for the average individual. Style shoes may be worn for partying and socialising when we are in them for two to four hours at most.
It is important to remember that shoes made by different manufacturers may have a different fit. For example, a size 6 in one style/brand shoe may be a 7 or 8 in another. With age the ligaments of the feet can become more lax and can increase your shoe size. It is therefore important to take these factors into consideration when purchasing a pair of shoes. In other words your shoe size can change over the years and is not a permanent number attached to your feet.
As a diabetic because of the altered sensations and circulation it is always important to have a shoe properly fitted and the wearing in of a shoe should not be the opportunity for the shoe to stretch but for the opportunity for your feet to get accustomed to the shoe, especially if it is not a style to with which you are accustomed. If you have to wait for a shoe to stretch you can do yourself a lot of harm. Stretching of a shoe will not occur if there is no reason for it to stretch.
So it is now becoming a little more confusing to buy a pair of shoes. Here are some hints to take into consideration when you make your purchase.
- Have a good idea of your shoe size, and only use it as a starting point. That is the first size for the shop assistant to bring for you to try.
- Visit your shoe store when you have time and the store is not too busy. And if your feet tend to swell go in the afternoon so you find a pair of shoes that will not be too tight – and a laced or Velcro adjustable strap is the better styles for you.
- Select your shoe based on the shape of your foot, that is the length, width and depth, as just one to two hours in a shoe that is not suitable for your foot will can cause problems especially if you are diabetic or have other underlying foot disorders, or underlying illnesses that result in foot anomalies.
- A broad low heeled shoe is better as it takes the weight off of your toes and ball of your foot, the shoe heel should be no higher that 2 inches for a daily wear shoe.
- There should be enough space to wiggle your toes, and the edge of the shoe which is closest to your big toe should be straight and not slanting into a point.
- Your shoe should be a finger’s width longer than your longest toe (that is your big toe in some cases or your second toe).
- If you are diabetic, the sole should be thick enough to be protective to tacks and nails penetrating the shoe and reaching your foot.
- There should be no seams or button edges or ridges on the inside of the shoe that can rub your foot and cause irritation.
- The shoe should be long enough to allow for the elongation of your foot when walking.
(A tip the shape of some trainers toe box is ideal and in some cases where finding an appropriate shaped shoe is a problem then using an properly fitting trainer will help to make your feet more comfortable, especially when having to do a lot of walking.)
Questions to ask yourself after you have made sure you have fulfilled all the above criteria:
- How do they feel on?
- Can I wiggle my toes?
- Now that I am walking around the store do I feel any rubbing?
- Now that I am about to take off my shoe and I have sat down and touch the toe box am I feeling any pressure from my toes or foot on the inside of the shoe?
- Now that I think I am ready to make this selection and I have taken my feet out of the shoe, do I have any slight reddish or whitish marks on my feet that may indicate rubbing that I cannot feel?
If you are diabetic, here is a word of caution. Make sure you protect your toes at all times, so wear an enclosed or semi-enclosed shoe. You should NEVER be barefooted so even those trips to the toilet/bathroom at night require foot protection. Remember an ill-fitting shoe may end up being a long hospital stay and a long time off work.
If your shoes are too big for your feet, your feet will slip around too much and could also cause blistering and calluses.
Foot hosiery is also important. So make sure those socks and stockings are fitting correctly and are not too big causing rubbing on the inside of the shoe.
If you have special feet and are still unsure of what shoe selection to make get individual advise from your Podiatrist. Remember, these feet are made for comfort.