Many people with flat feet don't develop any associated problems or require treatment. Yet others may experience debilitating pain after standing or pursuing normal activity. If you are wondering if your flat feet are the cause of your foot discomfort, our Great Falls, VA, podiatrist can help. Read on to learn about what causes flat feet – and what your treatment options are for this common foot condition.
Great Falls, VA, Podiatrist Shares Some Facts About Flat Feet
What Causes Flat Feet?
According to our podiatrist in Great Falls, flat feet is normal for babies and young children, who don't have fully developed arches until about age 4 or 5. In a "normal" adult foot, the network of tendons acts together to form an arch for the foot's proper mechanics. If the tendons don't function correctly, little or no arch forms, resulting in a "fallen arch," or flat foot.
The condition is often hereditary, but can also be caused by injury, certain diseases, or simply as we age. Our Great Falls, VA, podiatrist says flat feet generally fall into two categories: "flexible" flat foot, which appears to have an arch, but flattens with weight bearing, and "rigid" flat foot, which has no visible arch both with and without weight bearing.
How Are Flat Feet Diagnosed?
A person can have flat feet but not have any associated symptoms, notes our Great Falls, VA, podiatrist. Patients whose feet tire easily, or their foot pain is severe enough to interfere with normal activities should see our foot expert at The Podiatry Center. The doctor's physical exam may include observing how your legs and feet function during certain tasks like standing on your toes, evaluating the strength of your tendons and muscles, checking the wear on the soles of your shoes, and foot x-rays to show the positioning of your bones and joints.
What Are Treatment Options for Flat Feet?
Treatment for flat feet and fallen arches depends on the severity and cause of the problem, says our Great Falls, VA, podiatrist. Most patients' feet respond well to non-surgical techniques, such as using customized orthotics to provide much-needed support for collapsed arches. Without treatment, the pain in the heel and arch from flat feet can extend to your knees, hips and even your lower back.
For severe cases of painful flat feet that don't respond to conservative treatment, surgical intervention may be necessary.
Are Your Flat Feet Slowing You Down? Our Great Falls, VA, Podiatrist Can Help!
Don't let foot pain keep you from enjoying the activities you love. Our experienced podiatry team at The Podiatry Center offers different treatment options for flat feet, as well as many other foot and ankle conditions. Call our Great Falls podiatrist today to get started on restoring your active lifestyle!
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you suffer from painful flat feet, make an appointment with our Great Falls, VA, podiatrist for an evaluation by clicking here or by calling 301.656.6055.