From walking to running and maintaining our balance, we owe much to our feet. Yet, we are pretty negligent, especially when it comes to caring for them. Although your feet don't ask for much, except a good pair of shoes and some love every now and then, most of us tend to bare a rather casual attitude towards these demands.
However, the lesser know fact is that the more we fail to care for our feet, the more damage will occur due to this negligence.
In order to save your self from potential health hazards, here is what you need to know about modern foot wear and the impact it leaves on our body on a regular basis:
1. Collapsed Arches
Probably the most visible side effect of wearing the wrong shoes is the collapsed arches. The foot is supposed to arch in three different areas and the absence of either one or all has been given the name of collapsed or fallen arches.
"Constant tightness in the Achilles tendon and the muscles at the back of the leg are the reason for why the foot changes it shape", says hiking enthusiast and footwear expert Brain. He's been in the industry for well above a decade and blogs about his personal experiences at BootBomb.
According to Brian, people that tend to wear flat shoes with absolutely no heel to support the natural arches of their foot are more prone to collapsed arches. Strain to these soft tissues for a prolonged time results in not just structural damage, but also liberates pain in both the arch and heal area as a permanent side effect.
2. In-grown Nails, Corns and Constant Fungal Outbreaks
Though these are considered relevant to foot hygiene, all of these conditions are a direct consequence of ill-fitting, tight shoes too. Your feet have many working parts which includes bones, joints, muscles, tissues and nerves and all of these need to work together and properly. Anything that tries to restrict your foot is doing no good to all these working parts.
Tight shoes go against the anatomy of a healthy foot and as a result physical problems like in-grown nails, hard skinned corns and fungal outbreaks manifest. Tight shoes are also the leading cause of restricting airflow with is necessary, especially as the foot sweats.
3. Bad posture and Back Aches
One of the leading causes of a bad posture and chronic back aches that don't seem to go are shoes. Your feet support the entire body and therefore it requires proper support and in case of footwear that does not compliment the feet, you can expect the problem to travel everywhere as well. Heels and flats are both a trigger for back aches.
Both kinds of shoes don't ensure uniform distribution of your weight, which means one part of the foot and the surrounding connected muscles take the beating. Constant pressure leads to disturbances in the posture which can trigger aches in not just the muscles and joints, but in several nerves such as the sciatic nerve pain.
4. Preventative Steps that Can Help Big Time
While the wrong shoes can bring in many uncalled calamities and physical hazards, being mindful can help you combat many of them. Some steps that will help and maintain the integrity of your feet include:
- Keeping different shoes for different purposes i.e you should not go to the gym in your regular sneakers. Instead you should opt for proper footwear, depending on the occasion at hand.
- Opting for shoes with a slight gradient height, as they compliment the arches and ensure maximum support.
- Making sure that the upper part (where the toes and ball of the feet rest) is wide, the middle is firm and the end or the heel is well supportive and shock absorbing. Such shoes will ensure proper support and won't let your feet hurt at all.
- In case of persisting feet, back or joint problems, using not just good shoes but opting for in-soles and extra aid.
- Massaging and giving them a break by going bare-foot every now and then.
In the end, if your feet are in a good condition, you will feel better and out perform yourself in so many activities.