Free Footwear Health Check

At Happy Feet Pedorthics we have many clients with sore unhappy feet! Yet when they wear “good for them” shoes and if need be their orthotics, they are often times pretty quickly pain free and a lot happier. The reason why – more support to their feet with the footwear and the orthotics! As the assessment goes along in making a plan for the complete footwear requirements for the wardrobe the slipper question is always on the list. Do you wear slippers? How long do you wear them? Do you wear shoes in the house?

 

People of some cultural backgrounds only wear bare feet at home, or bare feet with socks, or only slippers or shoes which are not worn outside. This can be for the fact of the home is one’s private space, or for cleanliness reasons with respect to health or religious beliefs.

 

So what is the pedorthic response – the feet are in pain, the shoes and / or orthotics provide relief. The answer is one needs to wear the footwear – and yes it may be that 2 sets of footwear are required to give the person maximum support most of the time! The goal is Happy Feet, without which the face is extremely unhappy!

 

Many people wear slippers all day at home. This is like wearing thongs all day every day. Or like going barefoot every day. The feet are unsupported, There is a cycle then of tired, aching and painful feet and guess what we are all connected – then it is the ankles, the knees, the hips, and the back!

 

Slippers are for the morning and the evening. Our advice at Happy Feet Pedorthics is wear the slippers as you are getting up and getting organised in the morning and once all the main tasks are done, at day’s end when you are just relaxing. The recommendation then follows that during the day wear supportive shoes or sandals.

 

Many clients as the wisdom sets it talk about the lack of arch support and the met heads or the soles of the feet! My feet have spread and the soles of my feet are so sore! We need to give our feet and our body a chance!

 

Supportive sandals and shoes provide support to the structure of the feet. Many slippers can almost be described as fluff which can be rolled up and put in your pocket! At Happy Feet Pedorthics we have several slipper concepts. The characteristic of each range include:
  • a stable sole for safe walking
  • uppers with a stiffener or counter that supports and cradles the heel
  • velcro straps for easy access which can be adjusted simply and quickly to ensure a perfect fit.
  • size and width variables

 

Some of our slipper options provide safer and more caring choices for clients with wounds and / or incontinence.

 

So for Happy Feet day and night we invite you to ring and make a time for a free footwear health check including your slipper options!

 

Clare Nelson CPed CM AU

 

OK! We all agree – walking is:

  • a great way to improve or maintain one’s overall health.
  • a physical activity which does not have to be vigorous or done for a long time in order to improve your health.
  • low impact, requiring minimal equipment, which be done at any time of day at your own pace
  • not limited to strolling by yourself around local neighbourhood streets.
We also agree – the health benefits of walking are:

  • weight-bearing exercise
  • increased heart and lung fitness
  • reduced risk of heart disease and stroke
  • improved management of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes
  • stronger bones and improved balance
  • increased muscle strength and endurance
  • reduced body fat
The aim to achieve the health benefits from walking is 10,000 steps or more per day. So walk for at least 30 minutes as briskly as you can on most days of the week. Sometimes it is tricky to get a block of 30 minutes so consider:

  • Take the stairs instead of the lift for at least part of the way
  • Get off public transport one stop earlier and walk to work or home.
  • Walk, don’t drive, to the local shops – with a back pack and a trolley
  • Walk a dog yours or the neighbours

The story at Happy Feet Pedorthics so often is “I want to walk but ….” my feet hurt, my feet are so sore, my toes, I get blisters, my arches are so painful!

At Happy Feet Pedorthics we get into the features of “good for walking: shoes:

  • Enclosed shoe – velcro or lace which need to be not too loose and not too tight – just right like in the Three Bears story! The aim is to wear, not carry your shoes.
  • Stable base and a firm heel counter
  • A match with shoe shape and foot shape – giving your toes some wriggle room
  • Get the length correct – going uphill and down dale! Avoid your toes bruising!
  • Consider an arch support, met dome and cushioning. Give your feet a chance with an off the shelf product or custom made orthotic.
  • Often times a shoes with a walking heel and good role off from behind the met heads provides considerable comfort when walking!

With Happy Feet in good for you shoes walking can be a real pleasure:

  • varying where you walk
  • walking the dog
  • walking with friends
  • joining a walking club
  • walking at different times of the day
  • exploring what’s going on around you – the sky, the people, the sounds
  • looking for the self-guided nature walks that have been set up in many parks.

Clare Nelson CPed CM AU

The warmer months and autumn days are a great time to enjoy being outdoors more often, maybe visiting a beach, going bush or just hanging out at home or with friends.

Many people just love to go barefoot as often as possible indoors and outdoors. The risk of going barefoot is getting cuts, nicks and even stung on your feet. The feel of textures like sand between our toes, grass under our feet, the dirt of the campsite, the river pebbles and for some the heat of the paths and roads, can be just so freeing! Yet it is ill advised for people especially with some health conditions. For people with diabetes a small cut can take longer to heal and there is more risk of it becoming infected. If the person with diabetes has neuropathy – reduced sensation and feeling in their feet – they may not be aware of a cut until it becomes infected.

Going barefoot can also be a problem for people with cardiovascular conditions when there is reduced blood flow and circulation to the feet. Anywhere on the body that has reduced blood flow can take longer to heel.

When it hurts to walk because we have a cut or sore on our feet we are less likely to be as active. This can lead to further health problems like weight gain and loss of muscle tone and stamina. At Happy Feet Pedorthics clients talk about “before” referring to their active life style when they were fit and trim, before the damage to their feet.

Have you ever noticed how tired and sore feet have become when on your feet all day, bare foot, doing the daily clean, or spring cleaning, the washing, the cooking, the gardening and more! The difference between sore feet and not is to wear supportive footwear. At Happy Feet Pedorthics some clients keep the shoes for going out and it is back to bare feet, socks and if your feet are lucky slippers being worn all day in the house! No good at all for one’s feet – slips, trips and falls, stubbing your toes, lack of support for the muscles, tendons and bones in your feet!

Our advice at Happy Feet Pedorthics is:

  • Not to risk going barefoot either in or outside the house.
  • Wear some form of footwear at all times – minimal protection such as thongs or the original crocs.
  • Sit and feel the sand, grass and pebbles.
  • Check your feet regularly, keeping them clean, maintained by attending to callous and nail cutting.
  • Ask your podiatrist about how regularly you should attend for ideal foot care, and at the same time ask about self-care between visits. For some people regular podiatry visits are a must!

Clare Nelson CPed CM AU Feb 16 2016