Can High Heels Cause Back Pain?

Can your high heels cause back pain? There may be a cause and effect relationship. Or...

It could be that high-heels are just an aggravating or contributing factor.

Not every woman that wears high-heels will develop lower back pain. Just like not every woman with lower back pain wears heels.

However, if you are a lower back pain sufferer it is probably pretty safe to say you should not be using high heels.

High-heels are very attractive, give a women a taller and more slender appearance, and make women's legs look thinner and more shapely. These are all reasons why beauty contestants wear high heels during the swimsuit segment of the pageant.

Why High-Heels May Cause Pain

When you consider whether high heels cause back pain, you should be aware that elevated heels will cause your lower back to accentuate its lordosis (forward curve). This will predispose you to facet joint stress and misalignment leading to facet syndrome and its attendant pain.

High-heels can be especially aggravating and harmful if you already have facet joint arthritis and facet syndrome.

This increased lordosis, commonly referred to as hyper-lordosis, will narrow the opening between the vertebrae where the nerve root exits thus causing compression of the nerve roots within that opening (neuro-foraminal compression).

It may also cause enough additional disc stress to result in further disc bulging and subsequent sciatica due to nerve root compression.

6 Ways High Heels Can Cause
Lower Back Pain

If disc degeneration is already present, hyper-lordosis that is made worse from high-heels will have multiple affects. Some of these are:

  • Facet glide with probable facet syndrome
  • Nerve root compression within the neuro-foramen
  • Further disc stress and degeneration
  • Possible increase in disc herniation or bulging
  • Contribute to or aggravate sciatica
  • Contribute to or aggravate piriformis syndrome

It is foolish and risky to wear high-heels and even down-right destructive if you already have lower back pain. This is more probable especially if you wear high-heels on a frequent basis.

Can High Heels Help Back Pain?

Occasionally wearing high-heels will probably not be harmful...

 ...unless you already have lower back pain issues.

The use of high-heels may not always cause harm. Sometimes, in very rare circumstance, they may be of some benefit. This would be the case if you have a flat back or a lumbar spine that demonstrates hypolordosis (loss of the normal lumbar curve).

Listen To Your Body

If your not sure high heels cause back pain in your case, the sound advice to follow would be to listen to your body.

If pain is increased with high heel use or you feel more back pain the next day or so after their use, then it would be prudent to avoid wearing high-heeled shoes. If your lower back pain seems aggravated by the use of high-heels a negative heel shoe, or what is known as an earth shoe, may be beneficial and should be tried as a possible remedy.

Using negative heeled shoes alone will probably not cure your lower back condition but it could go a long way in helping you manage it. Along with other action steps this could very well be an important treatment ingredient.

Whether, your high-heels and low back pain go together or not, high-heels do and will put your lower back in an abnormal posture and alignment. This will aggravate an existing lower back pain problem.

If you don't already have a lower back pain condition the chance are great that regular use of high heels will sooner or later cause or contribute to the development of one.

You need to decide for yourself if wearing high-heels is worth it.

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