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You know that feeling when you get home from work and take your shoes off? The relief of finally being able to relax and put your feet up. For most people, this is a normal part of the day. But going barefoot in the house can actually do more harm than good. In this blog post, we'll discuss why you should avoid going barefoot in the house and offer some alternatives that will help you relax comfortably. So put your shoes back on and keep reading!

It's not just about the risk of getting dirt and germs on your feet. Going barefoot in your house can lead to foot problems such as heel pain and/or ball of foot pain. But you should be able go "bare" at home, right? The truth is that our feet do not know if they're outside or inside! You wouldn’t walk around Costco without proper support and cushioning, doing so will inevitably lead to foot pain. It’s the same concept when walking barefoot at home. You’re still walking on a hard surface, therefore your feet need support while at home.

Funny enough, when I have this conversation with my patients most respond and tell me they don’t go barefoot, they wear “socks”. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but socks don’t count as protective footwear. Sorry!

Walking barefoot in the house also puts you at higher risk for stepping on something and obtaining a foreign body. A foreign body is something stuck in your foot that doesn’t belong there, for example: a thumbtack. Foreign bodies can quickly become infected or even leave a wound on your foot. This is especially dangerous for diabetics or people with neuropathy who might not feel if they step on something.

To prevent any of the above issues, I recommend wearing a supportive, non-flexible tennis shoe around the house such as Brooks, Asics, or New Balance. I’m not saying that you have to wear tennis shoes in the house all the time, just during high impact times such as when you’re cooking, cleaning, or doing laundry. I have a separate pair of Brooks that I only wear in the house so I don’t track in outside dirt and germs.

When you are just relaxing, you can wear a house slipper to give your feet some support and cushioning. My favorite house slippers are Acorns. Not only are they super soft and fuzzy on the inside, but the have a nice rubbery, cushioned sole. They provide more support than the average house slipper and you won’t have to worry about sliding around on those slick hardwood floors.

So, the next time you’re tempted to go barefoot in your house, think again. It might be more comfortable for a few minutes, but it could do some long-term damage to your feet. If you can’t seem to break the habit of going barefoot in your house, despite knowing it’s bad for your feet, maybe it’s time to give us a call at 859-264-1141 or schedule an appointment online. We can help you your feet back on track and keep them healthy for years to come.