A podiatrist is a type of doctor who focuses on disorders of the foot and ankle. There is a wide variety of treatments that podiatrists offer, including both non-invasive methods and surgical procedures. These doctors frequently address conditions caused by both chronic health issues and unexpected injuries. If you are suffering from any of the…
When to Worry About Flat Feet
Having flat feet is particularly common in infants and young children. The scientific term for flat feet is pes planus, meaning the flattening of the arch during standing or walking. The condition generally corrects itself with time as children’s muscles strengthen along with their soft tissues stiffening. It is important to keep in mind that the arch in the foot increases from birth until about the age of 10.
Causes of flat feet
Having flat feet can come from having usual anatomy or ligament or muscle damage. Having a higher body mass index may also increase the weight placed on your feet. In the long run, this can cause your feet to flatten.
When flat feet should cause concern
Although a majority of flat feet are painless, there are certainly some circumstances where you should be concerned about having flat feet.
The treatment of flat feet is subject to controversy. However, healthcare providers have reached a general consensus about when flat feet should cause concern. If there is a decreased functionality within the foot, you may need to see a trained professional. Usually, when there is pain or decreased function in the foot, it is from an underlying or previous injury to the surrounding muscle or tissue.
Decreased functionality with a flat foot is also common within children who are overweight. These children also tend to have buckling or knocking knees as well. If this is the case, you may want to see a health professional as soon as possible. High levels of fat can lead to later health problems such as diabetes or elevated blood sugar levels. In adulthood, having a flat foot will be the least of your worries at that stage.
Another surefire way to tell if flat feet are a medical concern is if you or a loved one are experiencing difficulties walking or running. In the case of a flat foot, overpronation, or the process in which the heels of your foot excessively rolls past the normal range, can cause abnormalities during walking or running.
In reverse of the previous statement, a child with an excess of joint flexibility will show unusual levels of bending. If this is the case, ensure that the child has proper footwear to help protect the joints and ligaments surrounding the sole of the foot. Although virtually painless, walking abnormalities should be treated or diagnosed as soon as possible. There may also be many other additional underlying issues near the sole or heel.
Nonsurgical treatment options
You never want to place a child under surgical care unless absolutely necessary. There are plenty of nonsurgical treatments available. The first step is to modify activity levels. Decrease the time spent doing activities that require prolonged periods of walking, running or standing.
If possible, attempt physical therapy to rehab the foot. Stretching exercises can help provide relief in some cases of flat feet. If any pain is involved, try physical therapy and taking over-the-counter painkillers under a doctor’s supervision. Last but not least, there are also shoe and sole modifications available for those children with light cases of flat feet.
Request an appointment here: https://www.pocatellopodiatry.com or call Ambulatory Foot & Ankle Clinic at (208) 803-0010 for an appointment in our Pocatello office.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Read our Yelp reviews.
While most people may visit their primary care physician for all of their health issues, a podiatrist is a helpful specialist to see if foot-related or ankle problems arise. Podiatrists are responsible for all things related to the feet. They can diagnose and treat a variety of problems with the feet muscles and bones. Those…
Foot surgery can be scary and nerve-wracking, but it is often necessary so that a person can get back to functioning properly. Knowing how to prepare for an upcoming foot surgery is important so that the surgery and aftercare go smoothly.Though technology has evolved and surgeries are now pretty innovative, it is still an invasive…
Wondering why you are currently experiencing ankle pain? Or maybe you already know why one or both of your ankles are hurting, yet you are not quite sure what to do? The first thing you need to do is make an appointment with a podiatrist so you can receive a proper diagnosis. Once you are…