Women's choices in footwear affects their health

Fall footwear choices for healthy feet

In Foot Facts, Wellness by Alnoor Ladhani, Chiropodist

Women's choices in footwear affects their health

With the changing of the seasons comes a change in our footwear.  It’s time to put away  those summery sandals and open-toe pumps in favour of closed-toe shoes with some warmth and some good traction.  At this time of year, we never know when the first flurries will fly!  Be ready by choosing your fall footwear now.

Fall footwear might include athletic style “sneakers”, a hiking style boot to enjoy fall trail walks and hikes, fashionable high heeled boots, or closed-toed heels around the office.  We’ve already written about heels; if they are a must-have indulgence, please at least read our earlier post about Foot Health for Active Women.  Hopefully it will help you indulge while still giving your feet a break.

Some people dread closed-toe shoe season for reasons other than an unwillingness to say goodbye to summer.  For people who suffer from bunions, closed shoes may have become extremely uncomfortable, even painful, to wear.  Others find they suffer from ingrown toenails once they change back into closed shoes again.  And sometimes, after being out in the open all summer long, we just find closed shoes make our feet feel damp.

The key to making the “change” to fall appropriate footwear is to wear shoes that are actually appropriate for your feet.  This makes sense, but sometimes people struggle to choose shoes that fit properly, breathe properly, and feel comfortable without aggravating existing conditions.

People who suffer with bunions should see a chiropodist/podiatrist to discuss treatment options.  If your bunion is making it hard to wear shoes comfortably, it is definitely time to find a solution; don’t suffer any longer!  We may be able to help you find a pair of shoes that are more comfortable as well.  We stock a variety of fashionable shoes which are also well constructed and designed to support feet properly.


People who tend to get ingrown toenails once they move back into closed shoes are likely not wearing shoes that fit properly.  Tight fitting shoes that squish the toes together or which are too short encourage toenails to grow in.  Also, make sure you are keeping toenails properly trimmed.  When trying on a new pair of shoes, make sure you can wiggle your toes and that there is space between the end of your toes and the end of the shoe.

If you feel like your feet are getting damp when wearing closed in shoes, look for shoes made with breathable materials, and always wear socks inside your shoes.  Look for socks that are made with natural fabrics such as cotton, and even a light wool, which will allow your skin to breathe and will absorb moisture.

Also remember that you shouldn’t have to “break in” a new pair of shoes.  They should feel comfortable while you are trying them on in the store.  If they rub, pinch, or squeeze your foot, don’t buy them.

Proper fall and winter footwear is a must in our climate.  If closed toe shoes are causing your feet pain and discomfort this season, let Step by Step help you address your concerns and even help you find a pair of shoes that will make your feet happy.

It might be a bit sad that summer is over, but fall is a beautiful season as well.  Our fields and forests change colours, our farmers are harvesting tasty fall crops, and it’s time to cook comfort foods like soup, chili, and casseroles that we avoided in the summer heat.  What are some of your favourite fall activities, events, or recipes?  Please share them in the comments; we’d love to hear from you!