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The dangers of wearing high heels
FORT WALTON BEACH -- Some ladies don't feel dressed without them, but high heels are a fashion "do" with a downside.
Channel Three's Laura Hussey tells us why doctors say fabulous footwear can cause serious injuries.
At the Closet Swap in downtown Fort Walton Beach, they didn't carry shoes when they first opened. they brought them on because of customer demand. And heels like this are what the customers demand!
The ladies on Dancing with the Stars make it look easy, floating across the floor with their feet strapped into sparkly stilts.
But these catwalk catastrophes are a reminder that high heels can be hazardous accessories.
Foot and ankle surgeon, Dr. Tom Fusco, sees the injuries.
Dr. Fusco "The biggest one that we see is trauma. We see a lot of people that come in....ankle sprains, broken ankles, broken bones in the foot because you're unstable."
High heels put the foot in an unnatural position, where the body can't support its weight well.
Pinched nerves, calluses and stress fractures can all result.
It's not that we haven't been warned, many a mom has cautioned against a love affair with skyscraping footwear.
Tara Wesley "But we don't listen. Of couse, we don't listen."
Closet Swap Owner, Tara Wesley, says fashion and vanity are powerful persuaders.
Tara "Everyone wants a slimmer leg, everyone wants to look slimmer, be a little taller."
One person who's raided these racks to build a collection of towering treasures is Dr. Sarah Leatherman.
Don't ask her to pick a favorite.
Dr. Sarah "Oh there's so many! My very favorite? I just got a new pair, they're leopard print. I have not worn them yet."
Just your average shoe-lover, except leatherman and her husband are both chiropractors!
She says there's some evidence that wearing high heels long-term could cause back pain, so she doesn't wear them to work, and takes care of her legs and back.
Dr. Leatherman "Getting well adjusted, having your feet checked. Always make sure that you have a good pair of shoes that you're wearing at the gym, doing stretches daily."
Dr. Fusco says if you must wear heels, keep them under two inches, and choose a wider heel for stability.
Dr. Fusco "It can be a battle. We have all sorts of patients that....does not matter what happens to them or what the consequences are, they're gonna wear their high heels."
Now what do you think about this one, is that high enough for you? Actually it's just designed to hold a wine bottle, but it's not that far from reality. In Fort Walton Beach, Laura Hussey, Channel 3 News.