High heels: Damage caused to the body and remedies to cure it

 A pair of sexy, 3 inch high heels is a must be to complete the wardrobe for a girl. But, these high heels come with a price! They affect your body and cause great damages to the spinal cord and your feet.

The high heels are often made to seem like a right choice to look more feminine and beautiful. However, the amount of  pain it causes to the body should not be ignored. It is seen that women often ignore these damages and go on wearing them.

High heels

This article discusses about the damage the heels have on the body. We also talk about the remedies and safer options to switch to than wearing high heels.

Who wears high heels?

An astounding number of women have wore high heels and wear them on a daily basis. Nearly 72% of women wore high heels at some stage in their life. Although the percentage of women wearing high heels is decreasing than before.

High heels

Statistics say that about 77% women wear high heels for special occasions and about 30% women wear them on a daily basis to work.

Problems caused by high heels:

Problems caused by high heels

The high heels cause more problems than you can imagine. Balancing on high pencil heels is a task. They are not great for the natural posture of the body. This means that the body needs to adjust in some way to balance on the high thin heels. It does so by by bending forward the hips and the spine.

Posture changes due to high heels are:

  • Chest gets pushed forward which should naturally be straight.
  • The hips and lower back is pushed forward, this makes the spine lose its alignment.
  • The pressure on the knees increase and so does the pressure on the ankles.
  • The increase in pressure on ankles makes it painful to walk.
    Posture changes due to high heels

Back problems due to high heels:

The back is in the form of 'S' and hence it acts as shock absorber. When you wear heels the lumber curve of the spine which makes your back 'S' shaped becomes straight and the problem starts. The back pain starts and there is also a posterior displacement of head and thoracic spine.

Back problems due to high heels

This happens because, when you wear heels, your body naturally inclines in the forward direction. Hence to counteract it and maintain a good balance there is flattening.


Posture of the body changes. This is because the body compensates by pushing your chest forward and hips forward. This is done by the body to maintain balance and leads to problems in the posture. The posture changes with time and cause further problems with the back and spine and the neck.

Posture changes due to High heels

Heels bring unwanted changes inside the body:

Over usage of heels like pencil heels and stilettos lead to changes in the anatomical structure of the body. As we have seen above, the heels make you lean forward putting stress on the knees and the back. Moreover, there are changes observed within the body in the calve muscles, they shorten and the tendons become thick.

Additionally, wearing high heels eventually leads to slipping of one vertebrae forward and causes spondylolisthesis.

Spinal nerves are compromised:

The condition which leads to spinal nerve abnormality is known as foraminal stenosis. In this condition, there is blockage or reduction in space between one or more foramina. There is increase in the pain in the lower back. In addition to that there is also numbing, cramping, spasms and pain that radiates through the butt and down to the legs.

If you wear high heels everyday to work, then you are at high risk for a condition known as sciatica.

Easy solutions to these issues related to high heels:

Here are some solutions that will decrease the intensity of negative impact they have on the back.

  1. Do not wear high heels for long period of time. Especially when you wear heels to work daily, try to switch flatter shoes or box heels.
  2. Do stretching exercises to relieve the stress associated with the back and the legs.
  3. Buy the proper size of heels. Avoid buying smaller and tighter footwear.
  4. Try to avoid wearing pointed toe designs in heels. This is because they are lowest in comfort and the pressure on the legs is immense.
  5. Switch to leather insoles to avoid heels from slipping.
  6. Try to not wear heels everyday. If you want to appear taller try better options such as box heels or wedges.
    Easy Solutions

Home remedies for pain due to high heels

Here are some remedies which are easy and great for maintaining the health of your heels:

Contrast bath:

This is  great for relieving stress in the heels and ball of the feet. Just take two buckets, fill one bucket with hot water and another bucket with cold water. Then dip your feet in the bucket of hot water for about 3 mins an dthen take out. Immediately dip the feet in bucket of cold water for atleast 1 min. Repeat this procedure of contrast bath for 15 minutes.

Contrast bath

Ball massage to get relief:

This is very easy foot massage. Just take a tennis ball and place it under the feet. Then roll the ball while pressing the ball with the foot and the heel. It helps to release fascia and stress on the foot due to high heels. When the ball is under the heel, put extra pressure to get relief from the foot pain associated with its usage.

Ball massage to get relief

Bottle rolling massage:

Take an easily crushable bottle and add water. Freeze this water inside the bottle. Then take the bottle under your foot and place pressure on it while rolling the bottle back and forth.

Bottle rolling massage

Repeat this massage for at least 15 minutes and practice it daily for relief from muscle and ankle pain.

Hot bath:

You can use hot water bath and salt to get relief from the stress in the feet. It helps the feet muscles to relax and also helps the fascia.

Hot bath

Foot massage:

Massage the feet and heel with the help of knuckles and thumb. You should massage your feet once you are home after a day full of wearing heels. Massage the ball of the foot and the base with your thumb or knuckles.

Foot massage

Foot pack for relief: Make a foot pack using hot linseed oil and wrap the foot before going to sleep.

Yoga for spine health:

These yoga poses will help to cure the damage caused to the body by high heels.

Cat pose:

Steps to do this pose:

Stand on all fours on the floor with your knees and palms on the floor. Then inhale as you bend your spine in such a way that the belly is in dip position and the hips are up. Then exhale as you round your spine tilting your head and tail bone towards the floor just like a cat.

Cat Pose

This pose helps in relieving pain related to spinal cord and neck.

Cobra pose:

Strengthens the back and spine.
Makes your spine flexible.
You can achieve good posture with this pose.
Stretches the shoulder muscles ,chest and abdominal region. Hence flushes out stress due to high heels.

Cobra pose

Lying down body twist:

Stretches and tones the neck and abdominal muscles of the body.
Enhances muscle tone and protracts the muscles of lower back and hips.
Supple up the spine.

Lying down body twist

Downward facing dog:

It relaxes and calms down your body.

Downward facing dog


It is a very easy pose.

Come down on all fours with your feet flat on the floor ,palms flat and hips upward in a triangular position. Hold this position for a few minutes and then relax back to the normal position.

Locust pose:

Locust pose is very easy and focuses on the liver and surrounding organs.

Locust pose

You can do this pose:

Lie down on the floor and take your chest upwards. Also while doing so take your legs up from the knees in such a way that the entire strength of the body lies on the abdominal region. Be in locust pose for a while and then relax.

Half Spinal Twist:

This pose helps in detoxification of the body. It also improves the circulation to the digestive tract, hence aiding its function. Stretches the neck muscles and brings relief.

Half spinal twist:


Seat on the floor with legs straight in front of you. Then gradually bend the left knee and bring the right leg closer to the pelvic region just as cross legged position. Bend your right knee and keep your right feet over the left knee. Now, bring your left arm across your right knee in such a way that there is a twist in the spine.

Stay in this position for some time and then come back to the original position.

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