Why Are Flip Flops Bad for Feet

There’s no doubt that flip-flops are convenient and a breath of fresh air on a hot day. However, the comfort and convenience come at a price for your feet. Before you make the easy choice of slipping on your flip-flops every day, consider the short- and long-term effects of their impact on your feet and body. Below you will find the top reasons why podiatrists want you to skip out on flip-flops and choose a more supportive option. For more information, contact the top foot surgeon Santa Barabara has at Foot & Ankle Concepts.

  1. Injury: One of the more common short-term cons of wearing flip-flops is that you put yourself at higher risk for ankle sprains. They have virtually no arch support and zero ankle support. Due to the way the straps form over your foot you are also at a higher risk for tripping, which can result in a sprain or even a break.
  2. Zero Protection: One of the less commonly thought of risks of wearing flip-flops is the fact that objects can easily puncture through the material. If you are at the beach or outdoors, it’s easy for nails, glass, or other sharp objects to poke through the flip-flop material. Even if you have a more durable flip-flop, certain objects can still puncture through it more easily than regular shoes or sandals.
  3. Inflammation: The lack of support from flip-flops can impact your feet and cause inflammation. Without proper support, the band of tissue in your arch can begin to pull. The pulling causes inflammation and can cause a painful condition called plantar fasciitis. This could result in the need to take anti-inflammatories and possibly get physical therapy. Inflammation in your arch is reversible, but treatment is necessary if the issue gets bad enough.
  4. Bone Spurs: If your inflammation leads to plantar fasciitis, plantar fasciitis can cause bone spurs. If you have had plantar fasciitis multiple times, your body may begin producing new bone due to pulling the band of tissue in your arch. Bone spurs are very painful and can feel like pinching and pulling at the same time. If left untreated for too long, you’ll likely need surgery to get back to full health.
  5. Unsupportive: If you are wearing regular shoes with support, your foot naturally transitions from heel to toe rolling along to the ball of your foot. However, because of the lack of support with flip-flops, your foot essentially goes from your heel and then slams down on the ball of your foot. This can put extensive pressure on the ball of your feet, causing intense pain and sometimes swelling and inflammation.
  6. Gait Issues: If you wear flip-flops long term, you can expect a change in your stride. Gait changes not only impact your feet, but they can impact your ankles, knees, hips, and back as well. If your gait changes, it can impact the rest of your body, causing pain and discomfort that may require physical therapy treatment.


Foot Pain Treatment

If you regularly wear flip-flops or other supportive shoes and have foot pain, it’s time to make an appointment with a podiatrist. No matter what age, you should not have to live with foot pain daily. There are a variety of treatment options that can get you back to full health, including prescribed stretching exercises, orthotics, injections, medications, a bunionectomy, or fat pad augmentation. The foot is a highly complex part of the body that is important for your daily mobility. If you have been experiencing foot pain for over a week, contact a podiatrist as soon as possible for foot pain treatment.

Foot Surgeon in Santa Barbara

If you are concerned about foot pain or unsure which shoes you should be wearing for support, contact Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. They have several locations all over California, including Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barbara, Camarillo, Palmdale, and Westlake. They are skilled in treating foot pain and are focused on getting you back to full health again! Contact Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. today for an appointment!