Getting to the foot of the issue

By Efrosini Costa

Getting to the foot of the issue
Trying on shoes seems harmless enough, but what hidden nasties could be lurking inside?

You walk in to a store spot a pair of shoes you like, perhaps they’re on sale or just the right size, and instinctively slip your shoes off to try them on.

But did you ever stop to think how many other people had done the same thing and just how many feet have also been inside them?

According to a North Carolina podiatrist and member of the American Podiatric Medical Association, fungus that causes a range of conditions like athlete’s foot as well as the virus that causes warts can lurk in shoes.

In fact while it is very hard to contract the human pampillomavirus, which causes such warts, through human contact if the conditions are right, moist, it can enter the body through small cracks in the skin.

While the risk of contracting warts and athlete’s foot from trying on shoes is probably a lot lower than braving high-risk areas like public toilets, showers or pools barefoot, its still worth considering.

Carrying a pair of socks or taking advantage of the disposable ones available when trying on shoes is worth a thought. Especially for those who have a greater susceptibility to infection or whose immune system is compromised.

Older people, young children as well as those immunocompromised by illness or a medical condition should take care.

Do you try on shoes with socks? Will you consider it more now that you’ve read about it? share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.


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