Flip-flops: Summertime Woes for your Toes

Are Flip Flops bad for your feet? University Foot and Ankle InstituteWho doesn’t love flip-flops? They come in a rainbow of fun colors and designs. They’re cheap, easy to slip on, and perfect for summer lounging.

But watch your step, beach baby! Your flip-flops could be causing major stress and injury to your feet. Read on for some hot tips for wearing your flips!

Shoddy Shoes

Take a good look at your flip-flops. They’re made out of virtually nothing. Most flip-flops, especially the cheaper ones, are essentially a flat piece of rubber and a thong squeezed between your toes. You might as well have strapped a cereal box to your foot.

Without any protective outer covering, your flip-flopped feet could get cut or bruised by debris and other hazards. Have you ever stubbed your toe around the house? Now imagine doing it in public. While wearing a cute sun dress. It’s not pretty.

The skin on your feet, usually protected by socks and shoes, is more susceptible to sunburns than other tougher areas of your body. And the friction caused by the toe thong could irritate the skin and cause painful, ugly blisters.

Flimsy Flip Flops and Foot Pain

You might think that flip-flops are “easier” to wear just because you can step right into them, but in reality, your foot has to work a lot harder while striding. Ever notice how your toes involuntarily curl up as you’re walking in flops? Your muscles are straining to keep the shoes on your feet. This could create a muscle imbalance in your foot, possibly causing bunions or hammertoes.

That flat piece of rubber that makes the bottom of the “shoe”? It’s not supporting your foot at all, and you’re overworking your foot’s tendons and ligaments. What’s wrong with that, you might ask?

You could develop an over-use injury, like shin splints, tendonitis, or plantar fasciitis, and have to spend your summer off your feet. I’m sure many of us would love to lie around in a lounge chair and sip margaritas all summer, but these painful conditions are definitely not the relaxing vacation you’re looking for.

The Best Flip Flop: Tips for the Eager Flip-flopper

Do flip flops cause toe pain, University Foot and Ankle InstituteIf you simply must wear flip-flops, there are some ways you can minimize your risk of injury.

First, make sure you buy a flip flop that fits your foot. Your toe should not hang off the edge of the shoe; this could cause blisters.

Buy a higher-quality flip flop made from supportive materials. Birkenstock makes great sandals. So does Naot. Look for sandals that support your foot with a heel strap or a tongue – your foot won’t need to work so hard to stay in its shoe while walking.

Here’s an easy little test: If you can bend the sole of the flip flop in half, guess what? It’s probably not going to do any favors for your foot. You can ask your foot and ankle specialist to fit you for orthotics if your sandals have a removable foot bed.

Skip the flips if you’re going to do a lot of walking or heavy lifting.

Bad activities for flip-flops:
•    Hiking
•    Touring
•    Shopping
•    Biking

VERY BAD activities for flip flops:
•    Bowling
•    Yard work
•    Working with tools
•    Helping your friend Kimmy move into her new condo

Are flip flops bad for your feet, University Foot and Ankle InstituteGood activities for flip-flops:
•    Lounging at the pool
•    Walking across hot sand or a blacktop
•    Using a public shower (warts = gross)

Be safe and smart when buying and wearing your flip flops. Have fun, and wear sunscreen!

For more information on proper foot gear, we encourage you to call us at (877) 989-9110 or visit us at www.footankleinstitute.com.

The UFAI Education Team

The UFAI Education Team

For almost fifteen years, University Foot and Ankle Institute and their nationally recognized physicians have been providing the most technologically advanced medical care for the foot and ankle with the highest success rates in the country.

As a teaching institution, University Foot and Ankle Institute’s Fellowship Program is among the most advanced in the nation.

We at UFAI are driven to get our patients back to their normal activities with the highest level of function, in the least amount of time, using the least invasive treatments possible. From start to finish, we are with you every step of the way.

The UFAI Education Team works to help empower our patients and website visitors with the most up-to-date information about foot and ankle conditions, treatment options, recovery and injury prevention. Our goal is to pass on truly useful information to our readers.

We hope you enjoy our work and find it of value. Please let us know!
The UFAI Education Team

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

2 − two =

  • Yelp
    Dr. Franson, the nurses and front desk made everything so easy. Wonderful doctor and support staff. They returned phone calls quickly and we never felt rushed during appointments. The surgery was explained thoroughly...
    Deidre M.
  • Yelp
    My first appointment, Dr. Barvarian personally came out to the waiting room, introduced himself, and walked me back to examine my foot; but only after taking a detailed history of what I do for a living, when my injur...
    Haley S.
  • Yelp
    I had a ganglion cyst on my foot, and Dr. Briskin did an ultrasound and drained it. I didn't have insurance for this procedure, so it was a few hundred bucks. Dr. Briskin was a total pro, and the whole thing essentia...
    Walter M.
  • CustomerSure
    Doctor Franson and the whole staff have been awesome every step of the way! I recommend them to all my family, friends and co-workers every chance I get! Thanks Dr. Franson and UFAI staff!!!!
    Robert B.
  • CustomerSure
    The staff was fantastic and it they really took care of me. Some of the best service from medical professionals that I have ever seen!
    Ryan P,.
  • Yelp
    Quick, painless, fantastic service.
    Mike G.
  • Yelp
    I found Dr. Franson for a second opinion, after seeing an orthopedic specialist who misdiagnosed me and was about to cut my foot and ankle open. Dr. Franson put me at ease and ordered the appropriate MRI, which the ot...
    C.M.
  • CustomerSure
    I'm thankful that you have Saturday office hours. Making appointments is easy. OVERALL VERY VERY SATISFIED.
    Michael S.
  • Yelp
    I have been truly amazed with Dr Baravarian. I had a loose piece of bone at the base of my fifth metatarsal. Got an X-ray and an MRI right there in the building before having it surgically removed yesterday. Surgery w...
    James D.
  • CustomerSure
    I've had two Lapidus Bunionectomy surgeries (one for each foot) by Dr Baravarian and I'm thrilled with the results. My bunions were extreme and required extreme expert measures to correct them. Dr. Baravarian is one o...
    Ryan
Same day appointments now available!
or call 24/7:
  • University Foot & Ankle, a Preferred Provider to:
  • UCLA Health System - UCLA Medical Group
  • MPTF - Member Industry Health Network
  • Cirque du Soleil
  • ATP - Association of Tennis Professionals
  • And consulting physicians for:
  • C&S - Cedars-Sinai
  • Saint John's Health Center