What You Should Know About Children’s Orthotics
Shoe inserts and orthotics are often thought of as treatment options for adults, who already have a few decades of wear and tear on their feet and ankles. However, many of the biomechanical flaws that orthotics correct can be genetically inherited, and appear early in life. As a result, children may also benefit from orthotic devices to help them with problems like rigid flat feet, excessive overpronation, heel or arch pain, knee pain, or other problems.
That said, children’s feet are obviously different from those of adults. For example, almost all young children have flexible arches that flatten during the first few years of standing and walking, and their legs may still be “unwinding” from a slightly twisted uterine position until age 7 or so. Furthermore, they may be in their mid to late teens by the time their feet have finally stopped growing and the bones have reached full maturity.
Often kids will grow out of painful or awkward conditions, removing the need for orthotics in time. In other cases, inherited foot defects will persist throughout adulthood, requiring consistent attention. In either case, however, the last thing you want to do is let your child suffer through pain, soreness, or poor balance. If your child is unable to run and enjoy active play due to foot problems, they need to see a foot specialist, and often they may need an orthotic device—at least temporarily.
At Family Foot & Ankle Care of Jasper, in addition to fitting custom orthotics for children and young adults when necessary, we also carry prefabricated foot inserts designed specifically with growing feet in mind. This includes the LittleSteps line of prefabricated orthotics, which offer features like deep heel cups and strong arch support, which help to stabilize the back of the foot, relieve growing pains, and improve posture throughout the body. They offer many of the advantages and features of a custom orthotic, but do so at the fraction of the cost—a welcome relief for parents worried about buying expensive insoles year after year.
Our office is committed to providing the best quality foot and ankle care to your whole family, through every stage of life. Let us help you find effective, affordable treatment for your little ones that helps them stay active and grow up with healthy, strong feet! Please call (812) 481-7200 or complete an online contact form to get in touch with our dedicated team.