What to do when your feet are killing you

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Shoes

There’s a difference between sore feet after a night out and that deep, aching pain that seems to get worse every day. Our feet are always moving, walking, kicking, dancing and jiggling, and during a busy day, it seems they don’t get a moment’s rest. Nearly 80 percent of people struggle with sore feet, whether it’s blisters, calluses, sprains, or more serious issues like diabetes arthritis. If you’re one of the silent majority whose feet seem to hurt all the time, then here are a few things you should look at – and what you can do to help soothe the pain.


Shoes

  1. Check your shoe width

A lot of foot problems, such asbunions and bunionettes, blisters and Morton’s Neuroma (a pinched nerve in your toe) are caused by shoes that are too narrow, and result in the toes and ball of the foot being squished together. Wearing wider shoes with a lower heel and a softer sole will allow your toes and bones to spread out and reduce stress and pressure. Don’t settle for shoes that are a size or two up to give your toes extra room, as these will be too long, and your feet could slip, or your shoe could fall off. Find a store that stocks wide fit shoes that will be comfy enough to wear every day.

Shoes

  1. Take your high heels down a notch

High heels can really damage your feet, particularly if you like to wear them every day. When you wear stilettos, you’re putting enormous amounts of pressure on your toes and the ball of your foot, which will damage your feet overtime and cause serious pain. Wearing heels at least two inches high every day will shrink your calf muscle fibres by 13 per cent and thicken your Achilles tendon by 22 per cent. Save your sky-high heels for special events, date nights, and the dance floor, and wear either flats or a low heel day-to-day.

Shoes

  1. Ditch the super-flats

Those cute ballet pumps that only cost a few pounds are a godsend at the end of a long night, but shoes that lack proper support can result in some nasty foot problems. The worst is plantar fasciitis, which is the stabbing pain in your heel when you first wake up or after exercise. This happens when you tear your plantar fascia, the long ligament that runs from your heel bone to your toes and works like a shock absorber for your foot. To prevent this, make sure you wear shoes that have good arch support and have a thick, cushioned sole.

  1. Keep it clean

How often do you get down and scrub at your heels in the shower? There’s a wide range of foot infections that are unpleasant, painful and extremely common, including athlete’s foot and toenail fungus. Make sure to clean your feet thoroughly every time you shower, and dry them well before you put on socks and shoes. Tight shoes are another cause of these nasty infections, so look at a wider pair if you find your feet sweat often, and if any infections just aren’t going away.

Images: Nicole Gregorczuk by Paulina Wesolowska & Lukasz Zylka for Design Scene Magazine.

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