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Jul 24

APMA Staff

Are Flip-Flops Bad for My Feet?

by APMA Staff

Are Flip-Flops Bad for My Feet?

The hidden secrets of the seemingly innocent sandal.

Hot weather comes with numerous challenges for your feet. From chronic sweating to smelly socks, we’ve seen it all. But there’s one challenge that patients frequently never see coming. It whispers promises of freedom from constraining sneakers and a chance to show off your pretty pedicure.

We’re speaking of flip-flops, of course. Attractive to the eye and comfy to the foot, the sandals seem harmless. Unfortunately, they’re anything but. Why?

1. Foot Pain

Many types of shoes don’t have any support for your feet. Sneakers and some sturdier sandals do but flip-flops lack this crucial support. There’s nothing to cushion your heel, support your arch, or absorb shock. Think of your foot as a baby tree. If there’s nothing to hold it up, then the wind is going to thrash it about.

The same applies to your feet. Without a basic support system in place, there’s nothing to protect you from wear and tear, let alone tripping or running into things. The result is foot pain. Rolling an ankle or getting a sprain is easy as well.

2. Flatter Than Ever Before

Do you already suffer from flat feet? Stay away from flip-flops. Although a jaunt around the pool or a trip the beach is fine, extended use is almost certain to cause problems for you. Flips flops are incredibly simple. They’re just a piece of flat material, maybe with a tiny bit of cushioning, and thongs for your toes. Meaning they don’t do anything to change the shape of the foot or prevent tie side effects of flat feet.

3. Injuries are Easy

Have you ever stubbed your toe before? It hurt right? Well, that wouldn’t have been quite so bad with a nice pair of sneakers or a sturdy set of boots. If boots are a fortress, flip-flops are a bargain brand tent propped up by an old tree limb. They do nothing to protect you from glass, nails, or falling objects.

And if you already have existing foot or toe problems? That ingrown toenail or sprained pinky toe is now open to all the dangers of the world. If you’re going to be walking around all day, just say no to flip-flops. Especially if you’re at an amusement park or any area that might have broken glass or sharp bits that would pierce right through the fragile sandals.

Thinking about going for a run in your flip-flops? Stop. Strenuous activity compounds all of the problems we’ve already listed above. Did you know that our feet hit the ground at up to three times our normal body weight when we transition from walking to running? Imagine all of that increased pressure crushing your feet with the barely existent protection flip-flops provide. Sports like soccer and football are even worse—they’re full of opportunities for your feet to get crushed or stepped on. And don’t even bring up dancing with a clumsy significant other.

Flip-flops less than fantastic for your feet? Visit our clinic in Edmonds, WA

Suffering from foot pain due to flip-flops? Wondering about flip-flop alternatives? The trained specialists at Ankle & Foot of Edmonds can answer all of your questions. Call 425-775-6996, or complete our online form to set up an appointment.


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