Recognizing Serious Foot Injuries

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Three Common Shoe Fitting Issues And The Issues They Can Cause

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The importance of properly fitted shoes cannot be understated. Wearing shoes that don't fit well can lead to a whole array of foot problems, some of which appear suddenly and others of which develop slowly over time. But finding the best-fitting shoes is not always as easy as you'd hope. A good approach is to assess shoe fit by checking for three main fitting issues. Each of these fitting issues can lead to different foot problems. Here's a closer look.

Issue #1: The shoes are too narrow.

Shoes come in a range of widths, which are indicated by letters. If you shop in a lower-end shoe store, however, you may only find shoes that are "B" width. Many people should really be wearing a C or D-width shoe, but these are hard to find if you don't go to a higher-end shoe store.

Wearing shoes that are too narrow can cause bunions, which occur when your big toe gets pushed over to the side. You may also develop corns and calluses on the sides of your feet and toes where the shoes are exerting too much pressure. Have your feet professionally measured to see what width you should be wearing before you purchase new shoes.

Issue #2: Shoes that lack arch support.

Wearing flat shoes like flip flops every now and then is unlikely to cause an issue, but if your everyday shoes don't have enough arch support, you're likely to develop plantar fasciitis, a condition where the connective tissue that runs along the bottom of your arch becomes swollen and tight. This condition is really hard to heal, so make sure the shoes you buy offer plenty of support in the arches.

Issue #3: Shoes that are too small.

Some people buy shoes that are too small because they feel self-conscious about having larger feet. But while those smaller shoes might look good on your feet, they are likely to cause ingrown toenails and hammertoe over time. There should be at least a half inch of empty space between the ends of your toes and the ends of your shoes. Keep in mind that different brands are sized slightly differently. You may need to buy a half size or a whole size up sometimes.

Make sure your shoes fit well, and your feet will thank you! If you notice any of the issues above when you put on your shoes, consider retiring them for new pairs that fit better. Contact a doctor, such as at Collier Podiatry PA, if you suspect a medical issue.