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Medical Edge: Flip flop warning

Updated: Friday, October 24 2014, 04:36 PM EDT
CINCINNATI (Liz Bonis) -- A warning from orthopedic experts at Mercy Health about what people wear on their feet; flip flops can lead to serious pain in the foot, ankle or heel.
Joy Awad had the right idea when she said she wore her flip flops at the pool.  Flip flops won't hurt for a few steps and stops each day.  But wear them everywhere and they could be harmful.

"Twisted ankles if they slide off the flip flop; in the hot weather you get sweaty they slip off, tripping over the flip flop," said Dr. Gordon Yun.
Joy works with Doctor Yun.  He is a podiatrist who said it's clear that the flip flop was not evil all by itself.  But because every foot is different the one size and shape does not necessarily fit all.

Dr. Yun said, "There's very little to no arch support in a lot of these type shoes.  And certainly not as much protection as some other types of shoes."

He showed how the foot is designed to have an arch while a flip flop is not.  His suggestion was that people choose their shoes based on what will happen that day.  So if a person will be sitting and not walking a lot in a day flip flops might be fine.  Dr. Yun's main concern, he said, was that people can get soft tissue and ankle injuries and it was because a flip flop simply doesn't offer support.

Dr. Yun said, "The things that we see are more of the hidden types or problems; meaning, soft tissue strain, tendonitis, faciatis."

The pain caused by those problems often doesn't go away once it's set in, he said,  So life's a beach, but only on vacation.  A closed in running shoe is your best option for arch support in most cases.

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