What are the Best Shoes for Nurses?


“What are the best shoes for nurses?” is an important question to have answered when you are practicing nursing, either as a licensed nurse or as a student on clinical assignment.  Your shoes protect your feet from certain hazards and they play a major role in your comfort.  You will be on your feet anywhere from eight to 16 hours per shift, and occasionally, longer.  If you do not have the right shoes, you can experience discomfort and put yourself at risk for potential exposure to things like bodily fluids.


Does Your Employer Require a Specific Shoe?

Your employer may require a specific color or type of shoe, so you will want to get this information before buying a pair.  Most hospitals and clinics do not put rules on the shoes nurses wear, however.  If you are in doubt, simply ask your supervisor.  If he or she says that a specific shoe is necessary, ask for some advice on where to find the shoe.


Are the Shoes Non-Skid?

When you are working in a hospital, you will notice that spills happen everywhere.  You will constantly need to walk on slippery surfaces to clean them up and get to your patients.  This means that you need shoes that will not slip out from under you.  There are shoes that are specifically labeled as non-skid and there are brands that specialize in non-skid shoes.  Of course, you still need to exercise caution around wet floors, but a non-skid shoe will help to improve your traction to minimize the risk of a fall.


Do the Shoes Offer Good Support?

First and foremost, the shoe must fit well.  If your shoes are too tight or too loose, this can cause discomfort as you work your shift.  If you have wide feet, you want to choose a wide width shoe.  This helps a lot as your feet swell throughout the day due to being on them for several hours.  You want to look for solid arch support for your type of arch.  If you have a high arch, for example, you want a shoe designed for those with high arches because it will have extra cushioning at the arch point in the shoe.  If you have flat feet, you want a shoe that caters to this so that you are getting adequate support.  If you go to a shoe store, the associates can measure and examine your foot.  They can use this information to ensure that you are shown the shoes that are best for your foot size and type.


Are My Shoes Safe for Nursing?

When you are choosing a shoe for nursing, avoid open toes, open heels and mesh inserts.  All of these mean that anything spilled could end up on your foot because they will soak right through.  This could result in exposure to bodily fluids or skin contact with different chemicals and medications.  You want a shoe that is fully leather and durable.  This will protect your feet should something be spilled on your shoes.  Leather is also easier to clean.



Nursing 360: Choosing the Right Nursing Shoes

Scrubbed In: No More Aching Feet: Tips for Choosing the Best Footwear for Nurses

Nurse Together: 6 Tips for the Perfect Nursing Shoe



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