Q:

# How do you use a shoe width chart?

A:

A shoe width chart can be used to help people get a shoe that fits them better. Most women in the United States are a B on the chart, and most men are a D. If their shoes feel too tight or too loose, they can change to a different size, based on the chart.

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Credit: Daniel Oines CC-BY 2.0

Shoe width charts are different for men, women and children. Also, the difference between each of the sizes on each of the charts is relatively small. Here is how they are read and used:

1. Reading the chart for women
2. For women, B is regarded as standard but there are two sizes narrower than this. They are 2A, which is Narrow, and 4A, which is X-Narrow. In addition, there are three sizes bigger than the Standard B -- D for Wide, 2E for X-Wide and 4E for XX-Wide.

3. Reading the chart for men
4. For men, the standard size is a D, while B is Narrow and 2A is X-Narrow. At the other end of the scale, 2E is Wide, 4E is X-Wide and 6E is XX-Wide.

5. Reading the chart for children
6. There are four different width sizes for children. They are N for Narrow, M for Standard, W for Wide and X-Wide for X-Wide.

7. Determining if a shoe is the wrong size
8. There are several signs that a shoe is the wrong width for the foot. If it is too big it will feel loose. If it is too narrow the foot might cramp, and blisters or calluses could form on the toes. Finally, many people find they have to get wider shoes as they get older, as feet typically get bigger with age.

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