Medical Benefits Of Using A Footstool

Medical Benefits Of Using A Footstool

The medical benefits of using a footstool are perhaps not as well-known as they should be. Here we demonstrate which organisations recommend using footstools, who should use one and why they are beneficial to health and wellbeing.

During infancy, when mothers bottle or breast feed their child, the World Health Organisation recommends using footstools to ensure the baby's bottom is well supported. This is not only beneficial to the mother by preventing back problems it allows for better bonding between mother and child. In the United Kingdom, the National Health Service (NHS) also recommends a footstool to prevent back pain and sciatica and for treating the symptoms of lymphoedema by reducing pain and swelling of legs, knees and ankles. The NHS also recommends footstool use for improved wellbeing and relaxation to counter stress related illnesses, such as high blood pressure, anxiety, and depression.

In the United States the American Heart Association recommends using a footstool to make it easier to put on shoes and socks and The American College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists recommends propping up your feet on a footstool as often as you can to relieve swelling and soreness and stop varicose veins from getting worse. The American College of Nurse-Midwives recommends new fathers offer your partner comfort measures such as a drink, a footstool, or a pillow to use while nursing whereas the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons recommends using a footstool to make life easier after joint replacement surgery and for intermittent leg elevation. The American Academy of Family Physicians recommends a footstool in front of the toilet to help constipated children have their feet firm and find relief from constipation.

Rheumatology experts suggest that people protect their joints by standing on a stable footstool when reaching for high objects. Macmillan Cancer Support recommends footstools for the skin problems of cancer, and fluid build-up, lymphoedema, reducing swollen legs and leading prostate cancer Charities advise sufferers to employ the use of footstools for swollen legs. 

Sports injury clinics say that using a footstool for getting the last few degrees of leg extension in the latter stages of a rehabilitation process really has a meaningful effect on recovery. Recovering footballers, rugby players and athletes employ this advice in the latter stages of their rehabilitation process. Chiropractors recommend applied footstool use so patients can sit with knees higher than their hips to help them to steer clear of pain and inconvenience. This allows for improved blood circulation and quicker recovery times. 

On a more practical level the Turner Syndrome Society of the United States and Nemours Foundation advise placing a footstool to put things within reach, for example in the kitchen, the bathroom and with easy access to clothing, closets, personal care items, and other necessities. Also in the United States the Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome Association of America recommends using a footstool for the unaffected foot during static standing to promote weight shifting and balance.