The Painful Truth: The High Heels We Love Are Ruining Our Feet!

The Painful Truth: The High Heels We Love Are Ruining Our Feet!

Many of us are guilty of wearing high heels everyday and keeping them on even when it feels like we can't take another step but we endure the excruciating pain all in the name of fashion. And while it looks good and makes our legs longer, leaner and more statuesque, the question we should all ask ourselves is, whether it's worth it in the long run?

"According to a recent study, 39 percent of women say they wear high heels every day, and 75 percent of those women say they experience regular shoe-related foot pain and suffer from bunions, arthritic big toes, calluses, hammer toes, and plantar warts...

"Many women wear shoes to work every day that look great but they are simply too small," said Dr. Pedro Cosculluela, an orthopedic surgeon with The Methodist Hospital in Houston. "The biggest problems we encounter are related to the height of the heel and/or the narrowness of the toe box."
Click  image for larger view.
The narrow toe box makes it hard for many women to properly fit their entire foot into the shoe. This poor fit can lead to toe deformities in many women. These include bunions, hammertoes, and calluses...With time, and ongoing improper shoe wear, the deformity and the bump become permanent and can worsen.
High heels also bend the toes up and can move padding under the knuckles of the foot further down, exposing more bone to the bottom of the shoes, causing a great deal of pain.  Dr. Cosculluela adds that the frequent use of high heels is associated with the development of tight calf muscles. This can lead to other painful foot problems such as plantar fasciitis, flat feet and Achilles tendonitis.

To alleviate some of the pain Dr. Cosculluela recommends wearing toe pads over the bunions to prevent rubbing against the shoe will help ease the pain over the bump. Toe separators will help keep the big toe in place and ease pressure over the lesser toes, which can also alleviate pain.
...In cases that do not respond to conservative measures – such as shoe wear changes, orthotics, etc. - surgery is recommended in order to realign the joint, and establish proper weight-bearing distribution to the foot. Surgery also alleviates the pain associated with pressure over the bump. 
"There is a simple test to find out if your shoes will fit before you buy them. Take a pen and draw around your bare foot," Cosculluela said. "Put the shoe over the drawing, if your toes stick out of the shoe, they are too small and you might want to try a bigger pair that will cause you much less discomfort"."

Are you guilty of wearing high heels or uncomfortable shoes on a daily basis and what do you do to relieve the pressure on your feet? Leave a comment below.
Share This Post


  1. urrrghhh guilt.

  2. Pains me to say it but I'm guilty :p

  3. I try to alternate and wear flats a few days a week.

  4. gracey9/13/2011

    The worst is when you can't wear open toe shoes because of Bunions nasty things.

  5. I wear heels all the time in the summer but in the winter I love uggs and flat boots, so I'm ahead of the game.

  6. Wearing the right kind of shoes is very important. Go roomy and comfortable. Pick shoes that have a wide toe and skip those with high heels or pointed toes. Also, spending long periods of time on your feet can aggravate the symptoms of bunions. I use SmartToes Toe Stretchers for bunion treatment and hammer toe treatment. The unique design helps straighten and align your toes and feet and provide relief for bunion and hammer toe.

  7. Anonymous4/21/2013

    Wonderful website you have here but I was wanting to know if
    you knew of any forums that cover the same topics
    talked about in this article? I'd really love to be a part of community where I can get comments from other knowledgeable individuals that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Thanks a lot!

    My blog ... What is a bunion?

  8. Anonymous5/09/2013

    Hi, I check your new stuff regularly. Your story-telling style is witty, keep doing
    what you're doing!

    My homepage Suggested Web page

  9. Anonymous11/30/2013

    Greetings! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I really enjoy reading through your blog posts.

    Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same subjects?
    Many thanks!

    My site; broken iphone screen repair (


Leave a Comment.