Flat feet can be found in both adults and children and can negatively affect their lives. Pediatric flat foot is the term used to describe this condition when it affects youngsters. Even though there are many different kinds of flat feet, they all have a partial or complete loss of the arch.
Flatfoot in children can be symptomatic or asymptomatic. Asymptomatic flatfeet don’t have any symptoms, but symptomatic flatfeet do, such as pain and activity limitations.
Usually, by the age of three years, a flat foot in children corrects itself on its own as soft tissues tighten and muscles get stronger. Up until the age of nine, the elevation of the foot arch rises with age. The issue arises when the arch does not develop, resulting in flat feet. In severe cases, flat feet are linked to discomfort and impairment.
Numerous factors can contribute to flat feet. The following are some typical causes of this condition:
Tissue disorder: Connective tissues hold your body’s structures together. Due to tissue damage, these linking structures are harmed, resulting in connective tissue disorders.
Nervous system disorder: Conditions that affect the nervous system could also affect the development of your foot arches e.g. Polio.
Trauma: The base of the foot can sustain an injury, which can result in the foot becoming flat.
Cerebral Palsy: CP impacts a patient’s capability to move, maintain stability and proper posture. The most typical movement disorder in children is cerebral palsy.
Juvenile Arthritis: Pediatric or juvenile arthritis are terms used to describe arthritis in children. Joints may suffer irreversible physical harm as a result of childhood arthritis.
Muscular Dystrophy: Genetic abnormalities are the root cause of a category of muscle illnesses known as muscular dystrophy. Muscle deterioration over time reduces mobility, making simple tasks challenging.
Obesity: The major causes of pediatric obesity are a lack of exercise and an excessive intake of fatty foods and beverages.
Footwear: Flat feet in children may be caused by improper early footwear.
Flatfoot can be noticeable at birth or it can take years to manifest. The majority of children with flat feet do not exhibit any symptoms; however, some do. These include:
Most flatfoot cases are treated with customized footwear as well as arch support. However, in more severe cases of flat feet, surgery may be necessary to realign the shape of the arch. Other corrective measures include:
Consult your podiatrist to see if your child requires orthotics. These are specific shoe inserts that can help manage flatfeet. A foot doctor will be able to recommend appropriate footwear and exercises to correct this condition.
Our highly-experienced podiatrist, Dr. John C. Marzano, and the dedicated team at Westchester Podiatric Healing Medicine, P.C., NY, can effectively address your foot and ankle health issues. Contact us at (914) 423-0600 for more information and to book your appointments. We are located at 984 N. Broadway, Suite LL03, Yonkers, NY 10701.