Flat feet is one of the most common foot conditions we see at McQuistan Chiropody. The arch of the foot collapses, whether from a congenital situation disease, obesity, or improper foot biomechanics. The foot’s arch becomes non-existent during weight bearing and the over-strained muscles and ligaments can become painful and fatigued easily.
Flat feet and the collapse of the arch can also lead to calluses and corns and ingrown toenails. It’s essential to try to prevent the development of flat feet and treat this condition as soon as possible to prevent progression and discomfort.
What Causes Flat Feet?
The arch of the foot acts like a spring or shock absorber while we’re running or walking, as it takes the ‘hit’ from the foot plant and prevents it from jarring the knee and hip. The subtalar joint (the bone on top of the foot) spreads the shock from the impact of walking throughout the foot. We adjust the torque to continue our forward motion and automatically rotate the foot to the outside. If there is a problem or irregularity with the biomechanics of the foot, this process is interrupted and shock is not absorbed in the same way. If the foot is improperly aligned or hypermobile, it can lead to pain and discomfort when running or walking.
Flat feet can be caused by a variety of factors. Wearing improper footwear can lead to the development of flat feet. Because our arches act as shock absorbers, the joints and bones in our feet and legs play a huge role in flat feet as well. An improper structure of the foot, curving of the leg bones, or irregular angle of joints in legs, ankles and feet prevent the muscles and ligaments in the arch from working the way they are supposed to. This improper structure can be caused by genetic factors or circumstances and is often what causes flat feet.
Flat Feet Treatment
The best way to prevent flat feet is to give the arch enough support when running, walking, and standing. Wearing proper footwear that provides arch support, like orthotics for flat feet, is key for both children and adults to prevent flat feet from developing or progressing.
If left untreated, flat feet can lead to a number of other often painful conditions. Bunions, hammer toes, claw toes, and calluses are all common in patients with untreated flat feet. They can also lead to pain in the feet, ankles, knees, hips, and back. If there is a misalignment, it can affect the entire body.
Plantar fasciitis or inflammation in the heel or arch of the foot is also common. This can make walking or standing or long periods of time painful or uncomfortable.
The best flat feet treatment is to give the arches the support they need. At McQuistan Chiropody, we can recommend proper footwear to support the structure of your foot. Orthopedic footwear, custom foot orthotics, padding in the shoe, or insoles for flat feet can help alleviate the pain or discomfort of flat feet and prevent other conditions from arising.
McQuistan Chiropody can help find a flat feet treatment for you. Contact us today!