I can’t count how many pairs of flip flops I own. If I’m not wearing heels, I’m usually grabbing a pair of flip flops before I leave the house. And yes, I’m one of those people who choose to wear them all year round. But what’s easy to wear, isn’t always easy for your feet. When I wear flip flops for an extended amount of time, I do notice that my achilles will start to bother me. Also, after a few hours of walking around in flip flops that offer no support, my feet tend to get swollen.
Podiatrists definitely feel that flip flops are a big no-no and should be worn only for short periods of time.
“Flip flops generally do not provide the type of support that most of us need for prolonged walking or standing. In addition, they are usually too flat for most people. This can lead to pain and fatigue in the feet, calves, Achilles tendon, shins or lower back. Flip flops are fine for lounging at pools, parks or the beach, but many people overuse them and choose them as their all-purpose summer walking shoes,” stated Dr. Laurie Weisenfeld, a renowned podiatrist.
So before you grab your next pair of flip flops, you may want to keep the following pointers in mind courtesy of PopSugar:
- Sole is spongy and offers no arch support: The sole may seem soft and comfy, but your foot ends up over-pronating (rolling inward), especially since there’s no added support for the arch of your foot. This can cause pain in the heels, arches, ball of the foot, and toes.
- Muscles and tendons work overtime: With only that little v-shaped strap across your toes, there’s not much holding the shoe to your foot. As you walk, you end up gripping your toes, making the muscles and tendons in your feet do all the work. This can lead to tendinitis.
- Flat shoes strain the Achilles tendon: If you’re used to wearing shoes that have a raised heel, flat shoes end up overstretching the calf muscles.
- No ankle support: Sprained ankles in the Summer are common because of flip-flop use.
- Lead to calluses and heel fissures: All that pounding on the back of your foot hardens the skin, and since your feet are exposed to air, the skin can dry out. If it gets too dry, the callused skin can crack and bleed, which is very painful.
- Can cause hip and lower back pain: When wearing flip-flops, you tend to alter your gait, taking shorter steps, which can lead to pain in other areas of the body.
- Offer no protection from rocks, mud, or people stepping on them: Wear flip-flops exposes your feet to all kinds of sharp and dirty objects, increasing your risk of cuts, splinters, and bruised toes.