BY TITUS SERUNJOGI
HIGH heels and the urban girl have become inseparable.
They finish off any look, make the legs appear slimmer, making you look taller and sexier.
Wearing high-heeled shoes once in a while for special occasions is all right. But when you are wearing them to work and then again when out shopping and around the house, they can pose a serious health risk.
â€œWorn frequently, high-heeled shoes can damage a personâ€™s feet to the extent that she will feel so much pain and may not be able to walk until she undergoes surgery,â€ warns Dr Ssengendo Ntege.
He explains that high-heeled shoes throw the entire weight of the wearer forward, making it difficult to maintain an upright balance.
This forces her to use a lot of extra muscular effort to keep from falling.
As much of this extra effort is concentrated in the lower back, it produces an exaggerated arch which can cause back ache and other problems like shallow breathing, tight neck and shoulders as well as knee and ankle pain.
In addition, many women tend to get blisters and calluses on their feet after wearing stilettos. Calluses are overly thickened skin patches which can be unsightly. Although they are usually not harmful, they can attract infections.
Blisters can be so painful one may fail to walk.
These problems are generally caused by a lot of pressure and crowding of the toes.
A more painful problem is neuroma. This is where a nerve on the personâ€™s toes gets damaged after being forcefully squeezed into shoes. Tissue begins forming around the damaged nerve, causing the person a lot of pain.
Sometimes if the problem is so severe, surgery is needed to treat it.
If you wear high-heeled shoes frequently, the Achilles tendon tends to get shorter. This means that whenever you wear flat shoes, you feel pain.
This is due to the tendon becoming too short for flat shoes. Of course the body repairs itself over time, but with continued use of high-heels, the problem is only likely to become worse.
High-heeled shoes can also lead to Haglunds Deformity. This entails an inflamed, hard and painful bump forming on the back of oneâ€™s foot.
True. No other shoe has gestured toward leisure, sexuality, and sophistication as much as the high-heel.
And Dr Ntege says one does not have to throw out high heels completely, but should limit their use to special occasions only. He also recommends that people always check that the shoes are the right size.
The shoes you do choose should also be comfortable when you try them on.
It is not wise to imagine, the shoes will stretch after you have worn them a few times.
However, if you are a frequent wearer of high-heeled shoes, and want to lessen your use of them, itâ€™s probably best to do so gradually.
Better to gradually reduce the heel height and the amount of time you wear high heels in order to give your body time to adjust.