People with flat feet can live relatively normal lives. You hear stories of people not getting into the army because of flat feet which may have been the case at one time, but now you are only prevented from joining if your flat feet cause pain. Most people get used to the discomfort and learn to deal with it. Having flat feet can cause daily problems such as inflammation, tendinitis, arthritis, and shin splints. Hammertoes and bunions are common in people with flat feet as is poor balance due to rolling feet inward while walking.
Plantar Fasciitis is a very common condition caused by over-pronation. As the feet flatten, the Plantar Fascia (fibrous band of ligaments under the foot) is being overly stretched, leading to inflammation in the heel, where the fascia attach to the heel bone. Plantar Fasciitis causes chronic heel pain and sometimes a heel spur develops (bony growth at the heel bone). Orthotics correct the problem of over-pronation and they re-align the foot and ankle bones to their neutral position, restoring our natural foot function. In turn, this will help alleviate problems not only in the feet, but also in other parts of the body!
There is a great difference between average insoles and arch support insertsStandard insoles are only designed to give a cushioning effect andshock absorption. They may feel comfortable at to start, however theydo not focus on any biomechanical issues i.e. they do not relieveover-pronation. On the other hand, orthotic inserts are operativedevices, created to correct and optimize our foot function. Someinsoles also include an arch support, but often the support isinsufficient, especially if the insoles are made of yielding materials. Fallen arches” is a common term used todescribe a flatfoot condition that develops during adulthood. This should notbe confused with other causes of flatfoot that may develop during childhood oradolescence.
People suffering from Metatarsalgia often experience a burning sensation under the ball of the foot. Sometimes combined with a sharp, tingling sensation near the toes (this condition is called Morton’s Neuroma, see further below). The pain can also be stabbing pain that comes and goes throughout the day. In some cases people experience a feeling similar to having a pebble sitting under the forefoot. Ball of Foot pain worsens when wearing high heels/fashion shoes for a longer periods of time or, for men after walking long distances in hard shoes. Typically people with Ball of Foot pain also display excessive callous formation under the balls of their feet.
Unless your child has symptoms and her doctor has recommended that she avoid certain activities, there is no need to limit your child’s physical activity because of fallen arches. Physical activity will not worsen flatfoot, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians, and neither will walking barefoot or wearing a particular kind of shoe. Outlook As with any bodily injury or ailment, understanding the method by which the condition develops, the symptoms of the condition and methods for home remedies, will ensure a more prompt recovery and improved pain responses. For information on purchasing custom insoles, visit a local orthopedists or podiatrist specializing in deformities of the foot.
Our feet, after all, were designed to do what they do. Comprised of 28 bones, our feet are extremely subtle machines whose flexibility and ease of motion no shoe can rival. Consider walking shoes, for example. These shoes are designed with “specialty features” such as a heel rocker and a flared toe. Why? Because without these features, we are unable to roll correctly through our feet – a motion that we perform naturally when we go barefoot. Shoes force our feet into unnatural (and unhealthy) patterns of motion, which we then have to correct by adding “special features” to our shoes.
Unlike flat feet or fallen arches, where there is hardly any gap between the underside of the feet and the ground, there is a wide gap between the underside of the feet and the ground in case of high arched feet. When a person affected by this condition walks, stands or runs, the heel generally tilts inwards. This makes the foot unstable and makes one susceptible to ankle sprains. One might experience stiffness, pain and tenderness along the arch while walking. Those who develop high arches due to neurological conditions might suffer from foot drop. One might also suffer from knee pain or calf pain due to this condition.
The arch area is made up of tendons and ligaments, so strengthening the arch takes longer than other areas of the body, according to Foot.com. Incorporating controlled training with less supportive shoes will help strengthen the arch, while performing stabilizing balance exercises like balancing on one foot will also help. However, we are born with the arches we have so if you have a very flexible arch it is not likely you will be able to get away with as little support as someone with a higher arch. In addition to wearing an orthotic, it is recommended to wear supportive shoes with some degree of built-in ‘motion control’.
More can be done for the lower legs aside from strengthening and stretching the muscles as well as keeping the affected area iced and rested. Massage treatments can cause a marked improvement in the time required for healing. One of the massage methods is to massage under water. Cool water massage is highly recommended, since it can effectively help to lessen the swelling. To strengthen your feet when your arches have fallen, spread out your toes as wide as possible, and hold for ten seconds. Point with your toes, and then alternate with a flexing motion. Repeat both exercises ten times daily with each foot to see results.