As you transition from open toed footwear, sandals and your other comfortable summer shoes to fall footwear the one thing that most women often consider when deciding what shoes to wear is? "What can I place in my shoes to make them more comfortable"? Walking in comfort is always a challenge and a mystery for women especially in heels. "As we know not every shoe that looks good feels good"! The shoe accessory item that will always help make your shoes more comfortable, fit better and often times allow you to walk longer without pain is arch supports. They can make a huge difference in your life.
Arch supports are the key to comfort. They will allow you to walk happily ever after regardless of heel height or shoe styles. They will help relieve general foot and leg fatigue, joint, bunion, heel, ball and arch pain in the foot which is the most common complaints that women complain about when they come into my office. These problems generally occur due to abnormal foot biomechanics causing the joints in the foot to collapse known as pronation. This is a hereditary predisposition and not because of wearing the wrong shoes as a child.
The question that most patients ask me during their exam is "can surgery correct my problem"? Not, will an arch support or custom made orthotics help my foot problem resolve before I consider foot surgery.
Even though you may have a bunion, hammer toe deformity or a heel spur this does not automatically mean, "I must see a foot surgeon to fix the problem". Since you cannot replace something that has been surgically corrected, if the procedure is not completely successful you now have less treatment options. Surgery can leave someone with chronically swollen feet, painful scar tissue, less motion then before the surgery or a prolonged recovery. In some instances you may have to have the procedure redone to try and correct the original problem.
What you need to know is that surgery is the last resort in resolving any foot problem you may have until all other conservative options have been explored. Conservative care may include injection therapy using homeopathy or traditional cortisone preparations as well as physical therapy modalities such as electrical stimulation to eliminate your foot pain.
In my opinion most foot surgery is elective unless there is a painful arthritis condition in the joints of your foot, major trauma to your foot in which you suffered multiple fractures or dislocations.
However, foot surgery can also solve a problem when necessary as long as the correct procedure was performed. Always make sure the procedure is performed for the right reasons such as, every conservative option has failed and my foot still hurts. I recommend that patients should always get 3 opinions and make sure that two are similar. Make sure you understand the proposed procedure and always bring a list of questions that you prepared ahead of time. Having your husband, significant other or a friend with you is always a good idea for support and provides another ear.
Anyone of these foot problems can limit your comfort when wearing fashion footwear. So the take away here is first conservative care such as over the counter arch supports or orthotics to control the abnormal foot biomechanics that have allowed these foot problems to develop, physical therapy or injections to help eliminate the soft tissue pain associated with them and then explore your surgical options.
When choosing the proper arch support make sure they are not too bulky, can fit in most if not all your shoes and do not change your shoe size.