Our Physical Therapy team is busting some myths when it comes to pediatric feet! Check it out below!


Pediatric Foot Myth Busters

MYTH: “It’s Normal for Children to Have Flat Feet”—It is true and normal for a child to have flat feet (ages 1-6) and all children do not mature at the same rate.  Over time as ambulation occurs the development of an arch should appear by ages 4-5.  Of course, there are also considerations for children who start walking later and, also, those who may inherit “flat feet” from their parent. Flat feet that persist and interfere with normal gait deserve an assessment to avoid any further damage to skeletal structures.


MYTH: “Growing Pains Are Normal”—Children can go through rapid excessive growth periods at some times but growing pains usually do not occur in the feet; rather occurring in the thighs, knees or calves.  A child who suffers from chronic or frequent growing pains in the feet should be screened for any foot pathology that could be addressed with appropriate orthotics.


MYTH: “Children Outgrow Flat Feet” Not always!!  If one or both parents have flat feet the child may end up with flat feet.  Again, it is wise to consider an assessment to prevent any disability or interference with normal child activities.


MYTH: “Using Foot Orthotics Causes Dependency on Them”   Actually the opposite—prolonged barefoot walking on overly pronated feet may exaggerate the deformity. There are pediatric foot orthoses which are affordable and can realign the foot during normal childhood walking, running, and jumping thus facilitating better muscle function and preventing future pathology.


So, there is no universal truth when it comes to the child’s feet!  Each situation needs to be considered individually when deciding if. when and how to treat!


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