October is National Foot Health Month. Do you know how healthy your feet are? If you have heel pain, foot pain, discomfort of any kind or any other foot ailments, your feet aren’t as healthy as they could be.
Some people think everyone’s feet hurt all the time, and that simply isn’t true. While occasional soreness in the feet from overuse is normal and isn’t a problem if it goes away quickly, many people have significant pain issues that don’t go away.
The most common type of foot issue is heel pain. In most cases, this is due to plantar fasciitis, a condition that’s marked by inflammation of the plantar fascia, a band of tissue that goes from your forefoot through your heel bone. It gets inflamed when you walk or stand too much, and a painful heel spur can form if there’s inflammation where the plantar fascia goes through the heel bone.
Some expert suggest that we don’t pay enough attention to our feet because of where they’re located. If we had pain in our face, we’d notice. If our hands were hurting, we’d do something about it. But the feet are at end of the body farthest from our thoughts and desires, so we don’t pay much attention.
But if we want to lead healthy and pain-free lives, we need to pay a bit more attention.
During National Foot Health Month, many experts are especially reaching out to women, who routinely abuse their feet by wearing high heels. The message of these experts is clear: reduce your time in heels or eliminate them from your life altogether.
High heels increase pressure on the forefoot to unacceptable levels and change the angle at which your feet hit the floor, causing structural issues in feet to develop. The more you wear high heels, the worse the problem gets. And problems only worsen as you get older. High heels speed up the progression of corns, bunions and other foot ailments that are caused by pressure too.
High heels may not cause heel pain, but they cause enough other kinds of pain and structural issues that avoiding them could make a real difference for millions of women. By the time you start to feel pain from high heels, it may be too late to prevent the worst of the problems.
Foot care experts also suggest always wearing the best quality, most supportive and most padded shoes you can afford, even if they aren’t necessarily the most stylish. But stylish models are available that include proper support and cushioning if you look around a bit.
Another message experts want to stress during National Foot Health Month is the importance of vigilant foot health for people who are diabetic or have any kind of vascular disease. And everyone over 60 should have their feet checked by a doctor.
In fact, anyone of any age with forefoot or heel pain should have their feet checked. Pain isn’t normal, and it can be treated.