Flat feet can come at any time and should be treated to avoid complications. Our podiatrist, Dr. Joel S. Segalman, DPM at the Performance Foot & Ankle Specialists, LLC, can help with treatment of this condition. Please call or visit us at our Waterbury 203-755-0489 & Newtown 203-270-6724, Connecticut locations today.
Flat Feet first happen with babies because their feet are still developing and is referred to as flexible flat foot. It generally doesn’t cause pain at this stage and most kids outgrow it as their foot muscles get stronger when walking. However, if this condition occurs in older children, it can cause significant pain. Adults may have normal arches that all of a sudden develop flat feet, referred to as fallen arches. Moreover, some individuals may have flat feet caused by a genetic condition.
Treatment for flat feet should include physical therapy that incorporates stretching to extend the heel tendon. Orthotics are also helpful as they provide needed support, alleviate pain, act to absorb shock from walking, help to walk easier and actually allow shoes to last longer. A special boot worn for about six months can prevent the ankle from moving up or down and thereafter allow the tendon to relax.
Surgery will be needed when non-invasive methods are not useful for reducing pain. It will involve restoring the tendon by moving another tendon in such a way to make the arch correct again and to make the foot straighter. The bone of the foot can also be cut and fixed into place with screws to realign the foot to prevent flat feet from occurring again. These methods will require long healing times, but more than likely will allow the feet to hit the ground normally with a normal arch.
In severe cases, fusions of joints in the foot are performed to provide better stability and improve alignment. After surgery, a cast must be used and walking on the recovering foot must be avoided as well. Since it would be best to avoid surgery, please contact us today to get your arches in their correct position!