For many, the summer heat makes wearing flip-flops very enticing. Recently, you’ve started to see them not just at the pool, but all over the place – even schools and supermarkets. They’re iconic symbols of casual summertime living, but are they the best footwear for you and your children?
In our blog posts and patient education articles regarding footwear, we generally stress the importance of well-fitting, supportive footwear. Arch support, cushioned heels, and a shoe shape that does not causing blisters or chafing are important components of health-promoting footwear. Flip-flops generally do not have these supportive features, so we would not recommend wearing flip-flops for a big portion of your day, especially if you will be doing a lot of walking. They would be okay for short distances, say from the house to the pool or beach. However, because most outdoor activities or outdoor play includes running, jumping, and climbing, foot and ankle support is essential to prevent foot, ankle, and other leg injuries.
When choosing summer footwear, we at Fords Foot and Ankle Care suggest that you take the following considerations:
- Sandals are probably your next best option in terms of staying cool during the hot days. Find ones that have good support and cushioning, especially around the balls of your feet, arches, and heels.
- Avoid sandals that are too constricting on your toes, which can cause pain, blisters, and/or swelling.
- For children, make sure you buy shoes that fit them when you purchase them – not ones they will “grow into” as it can lead to tripping, slipping, and blisters if their feet slide around.
- If you or your child insist on wearing flip-flops, try to find ones that have some support around the heels and on the arches. Wear them for short periods of time and try not to do activities that would have high risk of injury.
Are you or your child are experiencing pain or issues from non-supportive shoes like flip-flops? Contact our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Carl Ingrassia in Fords, NJ to find solutions to care for your foot or ankle needs.