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Shoes for Seniors

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Shoes for Seniors

It may be tempting to choose shoes based on style or a good sale, but poorly fitting shoes can cause a number of painful foot problems. Unfortunately, some seniors suffering from bunions, corns, calluses and other disabling problems because they are not wearing shoes that fit properly.

The best shoes for seniors are supportive and conform to the shape of their feet. In fact, a study by the Institute for Aging Research of Hebrew SeniorLife has revealed that certain shoe types increase future risk of heel and ankle pain. Wearing sandals with poor support and high heels in the past were reported to have caused foot pain in 64 percent of women who participated in the study.

It may be easy to skip the high heels, but seniors should still pay careful attention to the fit of new shoes. Consider the following tips when selecting the next pair:

  • Judge shoes by how they fit, not by the size marked on the box; shoe sizes vary by brand and style
  • Have both feet measured when you purchase shoes; foot size increases with age.
  • Fit shoes to your longest foot; most people have one foot that is larger than the other.
  • Avoid high heels and shoes with pointed or tapered toes.
  • Fit shoes at the end of the day when your feet are their longest.
  • Try on both shoes and walk a few steps to make sure they are comfortable.
  • When the shoes are on, wiggle your toes to ensure that you can move them freely.

More information on the best shoes for senior citizens.

Jennifer Rhodes-Kropf, M.D.'s picture

About the Blogger


Dr. Rhodes-Kropf, is a staff geriatrician at HRC. She received her medical degree from the University of North Carolina and completed her internal medicine internship at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and her residency in internal medicine at Cornell University/New York Presbyterian Medical Center. Dr. Rhodes-Kropf, an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, completed a geriatrics fellowship at Mount Sinai Hospital.

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