Children with strong, healthy feet often avoid many kinds of lower extremity problems later in life. Contact our office to have your children’s feet and lower extremities examined.
The size and shape of your baby’s feet change quickly during their first year. Because a baby’s feet are flexible, too much pressure or strain can affect their feet’s shape. It’s important to allow your baby to kick and stretch his or her feet. Also, make sure shoes and socks do not squeeze the toes.
Try not to force your toddler to walk before they are ready. Carefully watch their gait once they begin to walk. If your toddler’s toe touches down instead of the heel, or they always sit while others play, contact our office. Many toddlers have a pigeon-toe gait, and this is normal. Most children outgrow the problem.
When Foot Care is Needed
To help with flatfeet, special shoes or custom-made shoe inserts may be prescribed. To correct mild intoeing, your toddler may need to sit in a different position while playing or watching TV. If your child’s feet turn in or out a lot, corrective shoes, splints, or night braces may be prescribed.
The foot’s bone structure is well-formed by the time your child reaches age 7 or 8, but if a growth plate (the area where bone growth begins) is injured, the damaged plate may cause the bone to grow oddly. With a podiatrist’s care, however, the risk of future bone problems is reduced.
Remember to check your child’s shoe size often. Make sure there is space between the toes and the end of the shoe, Make sure their shoes are roomy enough to allow the toes to move freely. Don’t let your child wear hand-me-downs.