Wearing the right type of shoes can improve an elderly person’s quality of life significantly, a new study has revealed.
The research, published by the Podiatry University Clinic at the University of A Coruña in Spain, looked at people with an average age of 75 and the type of footwear they use on a day-to-day basis.
It found that in more than three quarters of cases, the poor choice of shoes elderly people were wearing was causing them to seek medical treatment for their feet.
“Because of people’s lifestyles at this age, they can use shoes that are harmful to their feet,” said Daniel López, a scientist who led the study.
“This, combined with the appearance of chronic diseases such as obesity, vascular diseases, diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, causes a worrying increase in foot problems in elderly people of between 71 per cent and 87 per cent.
“This means having to seek medical and podiatric attention more frequently, as it affects their functional capacity and quality of life.”
Among the main problems associated with wearing the wrong shoes were pain, function and reduced social interaction.
Mr López warned that it also ran the risk of causing permanent foot disorders.
The study recommended that elderly individuals regularly visit a podiatrist to find the most suitable pair of shoes.