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Dr. Roderick Hunter, a prominent African American podiatrist and APMA spokesperson, suggests some simple ways black women can avoid high-heel pain and injuries.

  • When it comes to shoes, high heels are the #1 culprit of foot pain.
  • Most women who own heels say these shoes hurt their feet.
  • But that doesn’t stop them from buying them – the average woman who owns high heels owns 9 pairs!
  • And they are pretty liberal when it comes to height – almost half say they will wear 3 inch heels or higher.
  • According to a recent survey by American Podiatric Medical Association:

Ø  77% of U.S adults experience foot problems

Ø  27% of U.S adults said they had heel pain/plantar fasciitis

Ø  51% of U.S adults said their activities were restricted by foot pain

Ø  57% of U.S adults said that foot pain restricted their walking

Ø  44% of U.S adults said that foot pain restricted them from exercising

  • Foot pain is not normal and will not go away on its own. If foot pain is preventing you from staying active, it is imperative that you make an appointment with an APMA member podiatrist. Podiatrists are the most qualified in treating foot and ankle pain.
  • Heel pain is also caused by wearing poorly constructed footwear, such as flimsy flip flops, or by being overweight.
  • A variety of steps can be taken to avoid heel pain and accompanying afflictions:

Ø  Wear shoes that fit well—front, back, and sides—and have shock-absorbent soles, rigid shanks, and supportive heel counters.

Ø  Wear the proper shoes for each activity. Sneakers made for tennis players will provide different support and traction than cleats made for football players.

Ø  Do not wear shoes with excessive wear on heels or soles.

  • If you feel like you overdid it, there’s one word to keep in mind, RICE!

Ø  R- Rest. If you notice your feet are begging for a rest, it’s because they are! Try getting off of your feet for a while.

Ø  I- Ice. It’s time to ice that injury! Apply an ice pack to the affected area for 20 minutes every 3-4 hours for the first 48 hours.

Ø  C- Compression. If you have a mild injury, wrapping an elastic bandage around your foot or ankle can help. If you’re using it for more than 48 hours- call a podiatrist.

Ø  E- Elevate. This one is great for swelling. Try elevating your foot higher than your heart. This decreases swelling and promotes healing!

Get Well Wednesday: Black Women & High Heels  was originally published on