Patient Education

High Heels

Although high heels are a popular staple in many women’s wardrobes as a way to add style, glamour, and even height, high-heeled shoes can lead to a slew of foot, knee, and back problems, such as shortened calf muscles and toe deformities. They can also cause women to alter the way they walk, making them imbalanced and more susceptible to sprained ankles and injuries from falls as well as knee and back injuries. Despite the discomforts most women experience while wearing high heels, they continue to wear them, day after day, which compounds the problems that result from high heels.

To minimize the problems stemming from high heels, women can observe the following suggestions: keep the maximum heel height to two inches or under; make sure the shoe fits correctly in all foot areas, such as the heel and toe box; vary heel heights and alternate high heels with flats or low-heeled alternatives (shoes with wider heels and a heel height of no more than 3/4s of an inch); and choose designs of high-heeled shoes made for walking. Do not wear high heels for a time period of more than three hours.

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