Are High Heels Really Worth the Pain, Ladies?

Are High Heels Really Worth the Pain, Ladies?

Any woman who wears high heels will be surprised it takes so long... After one hour, six minutes and 48 seconds heels start to hurt, a survey found. But for a delicate 20 per cent, dancing shoes start to pinch after just ten minutes.

Are High Heels Really Worth the Pain, Ladies?

More than a third of respondents said their feet had been so sore on a night out that they danced shoeless and walked home barefoot. The statistics come from the College of Podiatry, which surveyed 2,000 British men and women and 60 podiatrists and chiropodists. Consultant podiatrist Mike O'Neill, from the College of Podiatry, warned that squeezing feet into smaller shoes can cause long-term damage including arthritis, stress fractures, and trapped nerves, which may even require surgery or steroid injections.

Mr O'Neill said: 'There's absolutely no doubt women who wear high heels are putting themselves at risk of permanent injury in the name of fashion. Given a choice between a stylish pair of shoes or nice feet, many will go for the stylish shoes.

'However, the higher the heel, the more they tilt your body forward and the more you have to lean back to compensate. This can put your pelvis out of alignment and cause compression of the spine. High heels ram your foot forward, which squishes your toes together and can cause ingrown toe nails, rough areas of skin, blemishes, and calluses.

'And because your toes are squashed, the moisture gets trapped, causing soggy toes, which is a breeding ground for athlete's foot.'

Are High Heels Really Worth the Pain, Ladies?

According to the study, one in four have danced bare foot in a club or bar when they could not put up with the pain any longer and a third have been forced to remove their shoes and walk home barefoot because of the discomfort.

Mr O'Neill added: 'Shoes make you walk on the balls of your feet can cause aches and pains, and ultimately, stress fractures. They also cause increased wear and tear in the joints and soft tissue, which can cause arthritis. Some women also suffer from trapped nerves, which may require surgery or steroid injections to combat the pain.'Wearing high heels shortens the Achilles tendon dramatically, which causes incredible aches when you then try to wear flats.'

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'Any shoes with a heel higher than two inches are a concern. If women want the extra height, they would be better off wearing stacks [such as platforms or wedges].'

The study also discovered that while women typically own 17 pair of shoes, men own just eight. Only 12 per cent of men admitted to putting up with stylish but uncomfortable shoes. Twice as many women as men report suffering from corns, cracked heels and bunions.

Yet despite these problems, 20 per cent of women refused to seek medical help because they believed their foot complaint was not important.

Finally, results showed that younger women are doing themselves the most harm.The study found that the younger the woman, the higher their heels. Roughly 20 per cent of those aged 18 to 24 own a pair of six-inch high heeled shoes.This compares with 10 per cent of those aged 25 to 34 and just 3 per cent of 35 to 44 year olds.

Are High Heels Really Worth the Pain, Ladies?

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