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Minor Foot Problems to Monitor in Children

Tuesday, 21 June 2022 00:00

As a parent or guardian, you may wonder if your young child’s stance or gait is normal as they learn how to stand and walk. As your child grows, most issues will work themselves out, but there are some things you should monitor. When babies are born, they do not have arches, which is known as having flat feet. Typically, by the time a child is 6 years old, their arch is developed and visible when they stand. Around the age of 4, many children will have a small gap between their ankles when standing with their knees together (knock knees) which should go away by the age of 6 or 7 when their legs straighten out fully. If the gap is between both their knees and ankles, this is known as bow legs. This condition is commonly present in children less than 18 months old. Some young children walk on their tiptoes (tiptoe walking) until approximately 3 years of age, and thereafter will usually adopt the normal heel-to-toe walking pattern. Feet that turn in (in-toeing) or turn out (out-toeing) will usually start pointing straight by themselves when the child is roughly 8 years old. Regular check-ups with a podiatrist will help ensure that your child’s feet are developing normally. Also, if the issues mentioned here do not go away on their own, or you have any concerns about your child’s foot or ankle health, have your child examined by a podiatrist right away. 

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact one of our podiatrists of Foot & Ankle Institue. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in St. George, Hurricane, and Cedar City, UT and Mesquite, NV . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
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