Employees returning to the office find shoes not fitting: Gainesville podiatrist responds

Employees returning to the office find shoes not fitting: Gainesville podiatrist responds
Published: Jun. 22, 2022 at 7:35 AM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - After months or even years of working from home in slippers or bare feet, some people are finding they can no longer fit in their previous work shoes as they return to the office. 

This is because they have spent so much time at their at-home desks in slippers or barefoot, much different than narrow work shoes.

Gainesville podiatrist, Jere Scola, said the transition from a sedentary lifestyle, to now working 8 hours on their feet can cause heel and arch pain as well as swelling.

This results in the shoe not fitting. 

“When they’re sitting more, now their tendons are not getting worked as hard. They are having their feet up more so their Achilles Tendon will shorten. It is like when someone has surgery and they broke their leg. Now they are in bed for a little. They try to get out of bed and have to relearn how to walk because they are not used to the low bearing forces on their body” 
said Scola.

He has seen increased injury because the swelling is changing the mechanics of how people walk; causing knee, hip, or lower back pain. 

Jere said there are some exercises to combat the increased swelling and stress. 

“If you have pain in the bottom of your feet there are certain stretches to stretch your arch out. If you have pain in the back of your legs there are stretches where you can hang off a step and stretch your Achilles Tendon. There is physical therapy, ice, and an anti-inflammatory. I am not a big fan of pain medicine because that just covers a problem. So your want to fix the etiology of the problem instead of the symptoms” said Scola.

The constant wearing of comfortable shoes or no shoes at all has even widened some people’s feet causing looser ligaments.

To further prevent injury, Jere recommends focusing on a healthy lifestyle including diet and exercise.

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