The hit 90’s television series The X-Files had a classic tagline “the truth is out there.” In the series, agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully investigated mysterious paranormal happenings. Episodes contained a wide range of plots centered on conspiracy theories, extraterrestrial life on Earth, and unexplainable phenomena. When it comes to more mundane issues, like pediatric flat feet, there are still some mysteries for many people. Our goal at Foot Specialists of Long Island is to help you find the truth that is out there over this particular foot condition.
Part of the mystery surrounding foot arches is the fact that when babies are born, their underdeveloped arches are hidden underneath pads of fat. When a child begins taking his or her first steps, it will appear as if he or she has no arches. This can be alarming for new parents, but it is actually quite normal. Arches do not begin to appear until around age 3.
Another mysterious component stems from a fairly common form of the condition known as flexible flatfoot. In this variation, a child appears to have flat feet while walking, standing, and supporting his or her bodyweight. The moment he or she goes on tiptoe or sits down—thereby relieving any weight on the foot—arches appear. This isn’t a paranormal occurrence, rather it is often simply a matter of an arch that is still developing. Arches do not fully develop until around age 8, so there is no usually no need for concern.
When it comes time to unlocking the mystery as to whether or not treatment is necessary, the rule of thumb is simply that it’s not needed unless the condition causes pain or interferes with normal movement and activity. That said, we may want to monitor the condition as your child develops in order to provide any needed treatment at the earliest stage possible.
With regard to treatment, surgery is only necessary in rare instances. Many cases respond quite well to conservative methods, including physical therapy, activity modification, and custom orthotic devices.In addition to flat feet in children, we provide treatment and information for any other foot or ankle condition they might experience. Call Foot Specialists of Long Island today at (516) 804-9038 to schedule an appointment for your child. You can also use our online form to contact our Massapequa, NY office.