• What You Should Know About Flat Feet

    by Dr. LaMour
    on Oct 7th, 2015

Like many foot and ankle conditions, flat feet (aka, fallen arches) probably isn’t something that you’ll ever think about until it affects you or someone you know. For most people who have flat feet, the condition isn’t much of a concern, since having flat feet is considered a normal variation in foot structure and doesn’t always cause problems.

But, for others, flat feet can cause pain or discomfort and, over time, lead to postural issues that put unnecessary stress on the joints.

What Causes Flat Feet?

Some people with flat feet have had the condition since childhood. As babies, we all start out with flat feet until our arches fully develop during childhood. However, some people never develop arches – a phenomenon which typically runs in families. Flat feet can also develop during adulthood. Repeated wear and tear from walking and running, wearing shoes without adequate arch support, and improper treatment or healing after an ankle sprain or strain can all lead to weakening of the ligament that supports the foot’s arch. As that ligament weakens, the arch falls, and flat feet develop. Other possible causes of flat feet include:

How Can You Tell If You Have Flat Feet?

If you’re not sure if you have flat feet, you can use a simple at-home method to find out! First, wet the bottoms of your feet. Then stand normally on a flat piece of cardboard or paper that will allow you to see your footprints. Finally, step off of the surface and have a look at your footprints. If your arch is normal, you should see an imprint with a curve on the inside of your foot. If you have flat feet, the wet marks will show almost the entire bottom of your feet. Of course, there are other clues that can be good indicators that you have flat feet, which include:

What Should You Do About Flat Feet?

If you’re experiencing foot or ankle pain due to flat feet, consult your podiatrist! After a thorough exam, your doctor may suggest orthotic arch supports, stretching exercises, supportive shoes, or even physical therapy to help alleviate your pain. Without proper treatment, flat feet may cause other complications, such as:

Don’t ignore your painful flat feet, hoping that the discomfort will go away on its own. Schedule an appointment with us today! We can give you an accurate diagnosis, and help you find the best solution for relieving your flat feet symptoms.

Author Dr. LaMour

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