Are Your Shoes Causing Heel Pain?

Are Your Shoes Causing Heel Pain?

Heel pain is an uncomfortable problem, primarily when it affects your everyday activities and doesn't seem to let up. If you don't remember a specific injury to your foot or heel, you may have damaged your foot through your shoes.

Dr. Jeffrey E. McAlister and the Phoenix Foot and Ankle Institute team offer cutting-edge treatments for heel pain and other foot disorders. Dr. McAlister is a foot and ankle specialist who helps you determine the best shoes to control your heel pain.

Do shoes cause heel pain?

Shoes protect your feet and provide you with the support they need when you're on them all day. However, not every shoe protects your foot structures the way they should.

Improperly fitted shoes can undoubtedly lead to pain in your feet and heels. There should be enough room in the front of your shoes for your toes and ample space for your entire foot.

Too-flexible shoes in the toe box are also not the best for your feet. You want a shoe that's comfortable and slightly flexible, and that also provides you with enough arch support to prevent problems.

If your shoes don't support the structures in your foot, you can end up with heel pain from an inflamed Achilles tendon, plantar fasciitis, or bursitis.

The worst shoes for heel pain

Today, shoes are made more for fashion than support and structure. It's very accurate that not all shoes are equal. When you only wear shoes that match your outfit for the day, you could be doing more damage than you know.

Several types of shoes could be better for your feet. A few of the shoes that often lead to heel pain include the following:


Flip-flops are popular summer shoes, although they don't provide much support. Flip-flops have almost zero arch support, and they provide minimal support to the rest of your foot. You can worsen plantar fasciitis while wearing flip-flops, increasing heel pain.

High heels

High heels put a lot of pressure on the ball of your foot and put your foot in unnatural positions. Wearing high heels regularly can lead to bursitis and painful inflammation in your heel.

If you need to wear heels, choose a smaller or chunkier style heel to take some pressure off your foot.

Ballet flats

Ballet flats are another type of shoe that doesn't give you any arch support. While fashionable and comfortable, ballet flats are a recipe for disaster when you have heel pain. They can even lead to plantar fasciitis, which causes pain and discomfort in your foot and heel.

Fashion boots are a type of shoe that may seem comfortable but are also bad for your feet. If the boots don't have arch support or enough cushioning, they often lead to problems in your feet, including heel pain.

Changing your shoes for relief

When you have heel pain without a known injury, the first place you should look is in your shoes. If you're opting for fashion-forward shoes instead of practical, supportive shoes, it's time to consider a change.

Heel pain from shoes is often due to poor arch support and pressure on your Achilles tendon or plantar fascia. If you're having difficulty figuring out which shoe works best for your feet, Dr. McAlister can help.

You don't have to throw all of your shoes away and start brand new; you can opt for either over-the-counter orthotic devices or custom orthotics. You can find over-the-counter orthotics at almost any drugstore, although they're not specific to your feet.

Dr. Mcalister offers custom orthotics when you want to wear fashionable shoes without further damage to your feet. However, opting for shoes that provide sufficient arch support and comfort is still a good idea.

When to get expert treatment

Changing your shoes is only sometimes enough to make your heel pain subside. If you've taken the proper steps to get more supportive shoes and are still having heel pain, Dr. McAlister assesses the problem and provides you with several treatment options.

During your appointment, Dr. McAlister evaluates your foot and heel to determine the best type of shoes for you. He considers your occupation and how much time you spend on your feet daily to help you find the perfect shoe and fit for your specific needs.

He also offers physical therapy and cortisone injections when orthotics aren't enough.

If those treatments don't work, Dr. McAlister also discusses other treatment options, including regenerative medicine treatments and shockwave therapy. He provides you with a customized plan to eliminate your heel pain.

To get expert help for your heel pain, don't hesitate to call our team at 602-761-7819 to schedule a consultation with Dr. McAlister, or book an appointment on the website.

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