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Are Your Shoes the Right Size? The Impact on Foot Health

Cutting the right size for shoe inserts

You wouldn’t wear the wrong size clothes, socks or gloves even so why do we neglect wearing shoes that fit properly? The UK’s College of Podiatry found that as many as half of women could be wearing the wrong shoe size. Maybe those second-hand Nikes were too hard to pass up or maybe you ordered some shoes online only to find out they don’t fit right but you really don’t want to send them back. Wearing the wrong size shoes won’t just have short-term effects on your foot health but can also lead to longer-term consequences.

Blisters serve as a poignant early warning sign that your choice of shoe size might be amiss. The discomfort they inflict isn't arbitrary; it's nature's way of delivering a vivid message. These painful blisters are a call to attention, reminding you that the potential long-term consequences of persistently wearing those ill-fitting shoes can be far more severe. They are like the body's alarm system, signalling that corrective action is urgently needed.

Should you choose to disregard these painful indicators and persist with wearing those ill-suited shoes, you run the risk of cultivating more severe foot health problems. Over time, your feet may contort, giving rise to painful deformities and unsightly bunions. These issues not only affect your mobility but also serve as painful reminders that proper shoe sizing is not to be taken lightly.

Moreover, the fallout from sticking with the wrong shoe size extends beyond your feet. You may find yourself saddled with perpetual foot pain, and this discomfort often intensifies when you dare to walk barefoot or continue to wear those uncomfortable shoes. It's like a persistent, unwelcome companion that sours the simplest of activities, casting a shadow over your daily life.

However, the implications of choosing the wrong footwear aren't confined solely to orthopaedic concerns. They can extend their reach to your overall well-being. Ill-fitting shoes can disrupt your natural gait and posture, potentially contributing to headaches and back pain. The strain that your body endures in response to the discomfort in your feet can trigger a cascade of discomfort that reverberates throughout your body, affecting not only your lower limbs but your entire body.

Kid wearing her mums black heals while mum wears tan ones

It’s not just about wearing shoes that are too small, wearing shoes too big can be just as bad for your foot health. If your feet are sliding about in your shoes the effects can be the same as wearing shoes too small. Not only will you still get painful blisters, particularly on your ankle, but your feet won’t be supported by your shoes correctly making walking difficult and potentially causing you to trip up.

So how do you find the correct shoe size? Going into the store to buy your shoes is preferable. Not only will there be staff there to assist you but being able to try on the same shoe in different sizes will help make sure regardless of brand, you still have the right fitting.

Not all shoes fit the same but if you can’t make it into the store there is a way of measuring your feet from home. First, try to measure your feet in the evening as your feet tend to swell throughout the day. You should also make sure you’re wearing the socks you intend to wear with the shoes. Start by taping a piece of paper to a hard floor. Stand on the paper with your foot completely flat, then bend your knees slightly so you can reach the floor. Now trace the outline of your foot onto the paper. You should then mark the tip of your big toe and the outermost part of your heel. Next, measure the distance between the two points using a ruler. You should then repeat this with your other foot as the size of your feet will often be different. The company you are buying from should have a sizing chart to convert the length of your foot to the company’s shoe size.


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