An estimated 5 to 14% of the U.S. adult population has the clinical diagnosis of “flatfoot.” Many more Americans have some degree of arch pain or weakened tendons that do not pull together properly. Without proper arch structure, tension increases along the inflamed and overtaxed bottom of the foot, causing a condition called plantar fasciitis. Excessive pressure on the top of the foot may also lead to dorsal compression syndrome or midfoot arthritis. Most patients with fallen arches suffer from some degree of back pain, so it’s important that you know how to treat fallen arches properly. Fortunately, there are exercises, shoe choices, home remedies, and a few high-tech methods you can use to successfully deal with your fallen arches or flat feet.
An estimated 1 in 20 American adults has some form of flat feet. For people with mild arch collapse, it may never be a serious problem. For others, adult onset flat foot can be a progressive and debilitating deformity. One easy way to tell if you may have flat foot is to step in a bucket of water and then step onto a piece of construction paper. Take a look at the resulting footprint. If you have normal arches, only about half of the arch region will be filled in, meaning part of the paper will be dry. However, if the entire arched is filled in, then you likely have flat feet.
White Plains foot specialists at The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine are available to treat your adult onset flat foot without scheduling delays or long office wait times. In the meantime, here are five facts you may not know about this condition.
Flat feet can be a real bummer. This common condition predisposes people to ankle, knee, hip, lower back, and tendon pain. The Framingham Foot Study of more than 3,000 adults found that people with flat feet tended to get more arthritis, bunions, and hammer toes than people with high arches. In our practice, we see a greater propensity for shin splints, front foot pain, calluses, and posterior tibial tendinitis among flat-footed patients. We feel your pain—some of our doctors have lived with flat feet their whole lives. However, simply wearing the right supportive footwear can prevent the everyday aches and pains and also reduce your risk of developing more serious conditions, so today we give you a run down of the best shoes for individuals with flat feet.
Most people have a small gap under the arch when they stand. Babies and some adults have completely flat feet, which may or may not cause symptoms of pain. When the connecting ligaments and muscles are strained, patients may suffer pain beyond the immediate foot arches and inner ankle — and up through the calves, hips, knees, and back, as well. The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine offices in Manhattan and White Plains, NY, offer a number of non-invasive therapies to help people suffering from this type of pain. The worst cases can also be treated with Subtalar Joint Arthroereisis by one of our experienced board-certified podiatric surgeons.
Some of you have flat feet – some of us at The Center For Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine do, too. You may have been born with them or experienced flattening over time due to age, activity, hormones, disease, or other factors. For most flat-footed people, this is just life: our feet will cause us no trouble whatsoever. But for another group of people, flat feet cause serious aches and pains that persist or worsen if not addressed. Popping over-the-counter pills like ibuprofen or acetaminophen may take the edge off, but a specialist can help you get to the root cause of your trouble.
Caroline Stillman could never find the right shoes. If you have a common foot size, you might occasionally experience this problem when you go shopping and your size is sold out. But Stillman’s problem was that she couldn’t find shoes in size 11. We’ve heard the same frustrations from many women with large feet. She’s not alone. It’s hard to watch from the sidelines as your friends slip into dainty heels that are dwarfed by your big toe. But Stillman has hatched a plan to help women who share her problem.
Flexible flatfoot is a common deformity in kids, believed to affect over a third of children by age six. One study published in the journal of Pediatrics found that most interventions were unnecessary, as the deformity naturally corrected itself in about half of all patients by age 11.1http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16882817 Arch formation often does not truly begin until age five, so it makes sense that it takes a while for foot structure to fully develop. Whether due to obesity, rigorous sports activity, choice of footwear, or genetics, some children develop unusually severe foot pain or walking abnormalities affecting other parts of the skeletal system. For these patients, flat foot implants may be necessary. Thankfully, revolutions in medical devices and implant procedures have made this a relatively quick and easy surgery.2http://www.mcall.com/business/mc-medical-company-flat-feet-fix-20150824-story.html
Flat feet are a common phenonenon in children, particularly in boys who are overweight and do not exercise much. All babies are born with flat feet, but most develop arch structure by age six. It is estimated that a third of individuals do not develop an arch at all, however.
Sometimes lacking a foot arch doesn’t cause any trouble and those with this problem will go on to lead perfectly comfortable, healthy lives. However, more often than not, foot pain becomes problematic later in life after years of wearing shoes not designed for perfectly flat feet. Having flat feet can alter foot position, gait, and balance as well.
The good news is that recent research suggests the answer for preventing flat foot development may be as simple as enrolling your child in Judo lessons!
“I am so grateful for having had Dr. Geldwert perform bunion surgery on both of my feet. I have complete confidence in him and continue to see him for other sports related injuries. I was cautious about having surgery for the first time, but his knowledge, patience, and skill made me completely comfortable in trusting him. And I couldn’t be any happier with the results!! When anything else feels wrong with my feet, I love that I now know to go immediately to him. He is my top choice for anyone searching for the best foot fixer/surgeon/sports doctor in NYC! Thank you, Dr. Geldwert!!!”
– J. M., Manhattan, NY
Manhattan Office 111 East 88th Street New York, NY 10128 (212) 996-1900 See map here
Westchester Office 10 Mitchell Place Suite 105 White Plains, NY 10601 (914) 328-3400 See map here
Manhattan Orthopedic and Sports Medicine 57 West 57th Street New York, NY 10019 (212) 996-1900 See map here
Dr. Josef J. Geldwert DPM, Dr. Katherine Lai DPM, Dr. Ryan Minara, DPM, and Dr. Mariola Rivera DPM serving Westchester County, White Plains, Ardsley, Bronxville, Harrison NY, Larchmont, Mamaroneck, New Rochelle, Rye, Scarsdale, Rye Brook, Chappaqua, and the surrounding area.
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