OK, ladies, I’m going as crazy for platform shoes right now as the next fashion-obsessed lady, but I will state for the record that I’m a heel wimp. When it comes to rocking heels, I may have a higher-the-better mentality at the moment, but to be perfectly honest, I probably wear elevated shoes about once or twice a week. So, personally, I was horrified to read some new statistics on our female British neighbors, and wondered if we have a foot health epidemic of sorts over here. In England, 200,000 women sought medical help for their feet, with 10,000 needing hospital treatment last year. More than half of these foot problems are directly related to high heels, and “over a third of women who experience pain in their feet are left with permanent damage.”
What!?A few more fun facts are that the most common complaint, bunions, are no joke. Besides the fact that they look awful, they’re actually a deformity of the bone and the only way to get rid of them is via surgery. But even scarier than hammer toes and shin splints (other common ailments associated with sky-high shoe wearing) are potential back problems and even suspected nerve damage.
Insert “killer heels” joke here.
Despite all this terrible news, according to the report, “65 percent of women still wear high heels for 40 hours a week at work, 35 percent of which wear heels over 5in high.” That’s a lot, and I would assume American women can demonstrate similar numbers (or worse given our penchant for excess). But would women wear heels that much if they were more educated about the risks? (For the record, I don’t wear heels much because I’d rather be comfortable, not because I knew how terrible they are for you.) Should there be some kind of stiletto awareness campaign? [Daily Mail]