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Perfect Pumps or Permanent Health Issues?

Most women love shoes; especially high heels. Whether it is for business wear, casual wear, beauty or simply for a boost of confidence, most women own or have frequently worn heels at one point in their lives. Studies show that many Americans wear high heels up to three times a week, and that this number is constantly growing.

When wearing heels taller than two inches, the foot slides forward, forcing the toes into an awkward and small space causing ingrown toenails and nerve damage. Over time, high heels can also shorten the muscles in the legs and back and lead to pain which can even result in muscle spasms. Although, some women have had no problems while wearing heels.

“I have not had any [problems] yet and I will say I do get my pedicures, normally, so that I can prevent that from happening. I’m really short so I wear heels because it makes me think I’m taller for one and it makes my legs feel longer and then a part of me feels like I’m more slender when I wear them as well. When I wear my flats I feel stubby and short; heels help me to feel like I’m not as short as I really am,” said Denise Grooms, Lowndes High science teacher and Varsity Cheerleading Coach.

The Achilles tendon is located in the heel and is designed to be flexible so the foot can lie flat or be in a point. The tendon will tighten up when the heel is pointed upwards causing the transition from heels to flats to be rather painful. This pain can persist even when only wearing flats due to unhealthy stress on feet.

While beauty is painful sometimes, there are ways to avoid it. Choosing sensible heels is definitely a must. Shoes with a short heel, an inch or two at the most, and soft insoles will cut down on the impact to the knees. Also, try to wear heels on days that walking and standing will be limited and alternate from heels to flats throughout the day or every other day. If wearing heels is a frequent endeavor, be sure to stretch feet, leg and back muscles to reduce pain caused by these types of shoes.

“I do know that there will come a point in time that I cannot wear heels as much as I do now and so I figure let me rock them when I can rock them. Then when I can’t, I can say I did,” said Grooms.

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