Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Fashion and Pain

High heeled shoes are a woman's best friend and possibly
her worst enemy.

A high heeled pump visually elongates the look of a woman's
calf, giving even those gals with less-than-perfect legs a
more long-and-leggy look. Worn with pants, high heeled
shoes give the petite woman stature and make all women look
more slender.

But high heeled shoes – particularly those with heels two
or more inches in height – can harm a woman, leading her to
possible sprained ankles and other maladies.

Possibly every woman who wears high heels has experienced
at least once that sudden wobble and lurch when she makes a
misstep and trips. Usually the only thing "injured" is
pride, but high heels do and will cause a sprained ankle –
sometimes severe enough to require medical attention.

When the ankle's ligaments are stretched just a bit over
their normal range when a woman trips in heels, there's
usually little pain and swelling and life may go on as
before.

But if a trip in heels results in a sharp pain and quick
swelling, the ligaments have been extremely stressed and
possibly torn and a visit to the doctor, plus curtailed
activities for several days or weeks will be called for.

In fact, a severe sprain could really be a fractured bone.
The fibula (the long bones in the lower leg) or bones in
the foot itself could be broken.

Therefore any fall that results in considerable ankle/lower
leg pain should be taken very seriously.

So should women relegate their footwear to sensible running
shoes and perhaps the occasional ballet flat? Not
necessarily.

Actually, a shoe wardrobe of flats only isn't best for the
foot. Low heels of one-half to three-quarters of an inch
are great for everyday wear. A variety of flats and low
pumps is a good shoe wardrobe. Save those higher heels
(around two inches) for special occasions. Walk longer
distances in flat shoes (and for really long distances,
invest in a good pair of supportive walking shoes) and
change into your higher heeled shoes when you arrive at
your destination.

In addition, avoid backless heels as much as possible. The
lack of a support to your back ankle can be very stressful
on your muscles. Even slingback pumps (a modified mule with
a strap that goes around the back of the heel) is better
than no back at all, but shoes with full ankle backs are
best.

A two-inch heel really is as high as a woman should go.
Heels higher than two inches move a woman's spine/buttocks
out of alignment and can cause bunions, lower back pain and
a host of other ailments. Two-inch heels still elongate the
leg and can give even the shortest and most petite of women
a leggy look, while preserving leg health and minimizing
the chance of ankle sprains.

It's also a good idea to stay fit and exercise – women who
exercise have stronger muscles. Stronger muscles help women
avoid strains. At the end of the day, stretch your calf,
foot muscles and heel. This helps them keep or increase
their range of motion.

Finally, is you have any foot pain at all for more than a
few days, it's best to see a doctor, particularly a
podiatrist, as soon as possible. The more chronic a foot or
ankle problem is, the harder it is to treat.


About the Author:

Dr. Alireza Khosroabady is a Fellowship trained foot and
ankle surgeon. He finished his surgical residency in New
York. He also completed a one year fellowship at the Rubin
institute for Advanced Orthopedics / International Center
for Limb Lengthening at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore
Maryland with world renowned Orthopedic Surgeons. He is
practicing in Los Angeles CA . More information visit
http://www.fixmyfoot.com you can request his free book.