Thursday, August 8, 2013

Head over heels, what would you do for fashion?

It is inevitable, that parents are the first adults that children look up to as role models. Little girls love to play dress up with mom’s clothes, jewelry and makeup. But as a parent, when would you draw the line? In  2009  photos of Suri Cruise, daughter of Tom Cruise and Kate Holmes,  sparked the “Suri Effect” wearing heels in the tabloids. This trend has now spread across the country to little girls everywhere. This has become a problem for moms and dads during back to school shoe shopping. Would  you let your daughter choose heels? While many parents are undecided, marketing research companies have shown steady increase in sales of fashionable shoes for girls in the last two years. It is now a 4 billion dollar industry.

One of the concerns expressed by some doctors is that it sends the wrong message to girls, promoting sexuality and by being ‘sexy’ you can become popular. From a Podiatrist’s perspective this can pose many foot health problems. Many of the bones in our legs and feet are still forming.  This process called ossification, can take up the age 20 + years. An elevated heel in a child can put abnormal strain on the bones, not to mention the ligaments and tendons that holds the bones together and helps us walk. But wearing heels may cause problems during development and this may lead to health concerns later on in life.

As a  parent of 3 little girls, all under the age of 9, I will invoke my own personal opinion.  We should be teaching our little girls less about how important fashion is and more about being leaders. As women have held over 50% of the college degrees for the last several years according to Sheryl Sandberg the CEO of Facebook.  We should be teaching little girls to Lean In, not tilt up in a pair of shoes! 

If you are concerned about a certain type of shoe for your children or have questions on how to select the right shoe, you can contact us at Center for Ankle and Foot Care.

2 comments:

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