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Common Foot Problems in Children

Footlogics Australia is committed to helping people suffering from plantar fasciitis and other common foot related ailments. As part of our weekly blog series, we have tackled a number of foot disorders and treatment options. These posts, however, mainly revolved around adults and seniors. Today, we discuss the growing number of children experiencing common and extensive foot problems. Like our adult and sports athlete customers, Footlogics is committed to helping children of all ages with timely and effective treatment options and tips. According to leading foot specialists and podiatrists, foot concerns at any age must be addressed in a professional and medical manner.

Common Pediatric Foot Conditions

Ankle and foot problems are very common in children of all ages. While some issues are hereditary, most are the result of overexertion due to physical activities and sports. These symptoms, however, are often overlooked or unnoticed. In fact, many parents feel their kids will simply outgrow these foot problems in a natural manner. According to leading physicians, children usually do not pay much attention to persistent or chronic foot pain. In fact, they tend to believe these issues are a part of growing up. Still, parents should keep a keen eye on their children’s ankle and foot problems. This includes ankles turning in more than usual, along with cramping, limping, pain, and especially foot arch flattening. If the child loses interest in physical activities or games, it may be attributed to foot pain. In these situations, it is vital to speak to a foot specialist before irreparable harm and damage occurs.

While there are several foot issues children experience, some of the leading problems include:

  • Flatfeet – Flatfeet is generally a hereditary condition, which sees the feet lacking arches. This can affect walking, balance, and especially physical stability. Flatfeet can also vary in degrees of pain but can easily be treated with orthotics (arch supports) from Footlogics. Stretching the calf muscles can also help alleviate the pain and tension associated with flatfeet syndrome.
  • Severs Disease – This is commonly known as “painful heel syndrome”, which usually affects children that are active in sports. As a growth plate disturbance, Severs Disease includes sporadic or consistent pain under or at the back of the heel. If treatment is not sought in a timely manner, children suffering from this disease can limp as the condition worsens.
  • Clubfoot – This usually occurs at birth and can be diagnosed via ultrasounds. Treatment is administered about a week after birth with a special casting technique. The newborn wears this cast for the first two months, and then special medicinal shoes up to 4 years of age. Some toddlers also require a special bar for mobility and walking purposes.
  • Tarsal Coalitions – These usually affect older children between the ages of 8 and 13. They emanate from devolving joints, which are fused together via a bone bridge. Symptoms can include pain and stiffness, which dramatically decreases the child’s interest in activities and games.
  • Growth Plate Injuries – These usually stem from foot or ankle injuries, and very common in active youngsters. The growth plate can get damaged from breaks or spraints resulting in diminished or no more bone production. The bone can also get deformed as well.
  •  Bunions – Bunions are as common in children as they are in adults. They are formed due to increased motion of the arch region, which results in bumps on the inside of the ball of the foot. Bunions can be painful, and often result in deviation of the big toe against the second toe. Wearing regular shoes can also enhance the pain and strictly limit activities and sports. Growth plate surgical procedures are administered to correct improper bunions or abnormal growth in the feet. This is a minimally evasive procedure and designed for children between 8-13 years of age.

Treatment Options

If your child suffers from these or other foot problems, medical advice should be secured right away. This will make the treatment options easier to implement, and the child will have a better chance of returning to normal activities and sports. Healing times, however, will depend on the child and the severity of the foot issue in question. Initial treatment options for pediatric foot/ankle problems also include plenty of rest, along with orthotics courtesy of Footlogics Kids. If traditional or conservative treatments fail to alleviate the tension and pain, surgical procedures may be required to procure lasting solutions.