SHOES & FOOT HEALTH
Shoes are an important part of your clothing.
Selecting the appropriate shoe and having it fit properly goes a long way in preventing foot damage in the long term, especially in persons with problems like diabetes, deformed feet etc.
Shoes must always fit comfortably and have adequate width and height for the toes, specially in case of deformed toes.
Leather and Cloth shoes are better than other materials. However all shoes must fit well and provide adequate cushioning.
Custom moulded shoes or orthoses may sometimes be needed for your particular needs.
Always check inside your shoes for foreign objects or tears or other damage to the shoes, before putting them on.
Use 2-3 pairs of shoes each day so that one pair is not worn for more than four to six hours.
Wear new shoes for few hours at a time and check for points of irritation.
Socks should be well fitted without seams or folds.
They should not be so tight as to interfere with circulation.
Well-padded socks should be part of foot care and your shoes should be big enough to accomodate them.
Avoid wearing open-toed shoes or sandals until you have discussed this with your podiatric surgeon.
Above all else, do not walk with bare feet or with slippers which have toe dividers…the standard “Hawaii Chappal” or “Flip Flops”.
SHOES HAVE THE FOLLOWING COMPONENTS
UPPER: Outer layer of shoe material, often leather or canvas.
TOE BOX: Area surrounding the toes.
VAMP: This cradles the area where the toes are connected to the foot, called the metatarsals.
COUNTER: Stiff material on either side of the heel.
LAST: Shape of the shoe.
What To Look For In A Shoe:
1.SHAPE: Square or Round Toe Shoes are better that Pointed toe shoes.
2.FIT: It should provide ample room in the toe area in both width and Height.
It should fit snugly in the heel .
3. MATERIALS: Leather & Cotton Canvas are the best as they let your feet Breathe.
4.TREAD: Depending on use and what you are using them for, the tread is determined. For example for running outdoors the tread should be rough and grippy but if you run on a Treadmill then the tread should be smooth so as not to damage the belt.
4.CUSHION: More cushioning will absorb impact better.
5.SHOE WEIGHT: Lighter shoes may seem more comfortable initially, but heavier shoes may provide more support.
6.SPECIAL NEEDS: Extra-depth shoes or custom-shoes may be necessary to accommodate for structural foot deformities.
A Podiatrist(Foot Doctor) is best suited to answer your questions and needs for special shoes, not a shoemaker.
General Tips on Shoe Purchasing
- Purchase shoes at the end of the day (when your feet are larger) to be certain they won’t be too tight.
- If you can’t wiggle your toes, the shoes are too small. Round or square-toed shoes have the most room, while narrow or pointed-toed shoes have the least and can aggravate conditions such as bunions and hammertoes.
- Measure both feet. One usually is larger and the shoe should fit comfortably on that foot.
- Try on shoes with socks or any special insert you normally wear.
- Walk around the store in the shoes before purchasing. They should feel comfortable. Do not expect shoes to stretch to fit your foot.
- Footwear with adequate cushioning or shock absorption, such as athletic shoes, absorb more stress and protect your feet. This is useful for anyone with heel pain.
- Shoes should have good arch support. Those that bend in the mid-sole area can lead to plantar fasciitis or arch & heel pain.