Confined feet: what is this staggering symptom due to the pandemic?
Sedentary lifestyle, anxiety. The different confinements have changed our daily life and have had an impact on our health. Experts are now warning of a surprising new consequence of the pandemic: "closed feet," in other words, "confined feet." But what is it exactly?
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, more than a year ago, our daily life has been marked by successive blockades. A new way of life that has had consequences on our health. During the first confinement, the majority did not perform physical activity during the day and many spent more than 7 hours a day in a sitting position.
However, we know that a lack of physical activity increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. But the increase in physical inactivity is not the only negative consequence of the confinement in our health and our body. This very special period would also have an impact on our feet: experts warn about a surprising new phenomenon, dubbed "foot confinement", that is, "confined feet".
"Confined feet": consequence of poor arch support
In total confinement, it is not uncommon to go barefoot, in socks or slippers at home. This seemingly harmless habit actually promotes the development of plantar fasciitis. In this context of the Covid-19 epidemic marked by confinement, experts have called it "locked feet", or "confined feet".
Plantar fasciitis is characterized by pain in the heel and arch of the foot, which may be due in particular to poor arch support. "If your feet are not supported, they can start to feel tight. Wearing soft slippers all the time ends up wreaking havoc," he told The Sun. United Emma McConnachie, podiatrist and spokesperson for the College of Podiatry (UK).
Result: "The ligaments in the foot can be stretched, the arch is unsupported and it becomes painful to put anything on with a heel," she said.
How to relieve plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is believed to typically occur in people between the ages of 40 and 60, but since the beginning of the pandemic, Emma McConnachie has seen a general increase in the number of cases.
How to recognize it? This pathology causes "pain in the heel, often unilateral, that appears gradually and frequently manifests itself on the sole of the heel, sometimes under the sensation of a nail in the shoe."
Walking barefoot or in slippers is not the only cause of plantar fasciitis. It can also be due to defects in the architecture of the foot, too frequent mechanical stress or even being overweight and obese.
To alleviate "confined feet", the first thing you should do is choose the right footwear. Emma McConnachie recommends wearing them even at home or, failing that, opting for sneakers that support the arch. She also advises seeing a podiatrist in case of pain.