How Do Flat Feet Affect Your Overall Health?

Having flat feet is exactly what it sounds like — the entire sole of the foot lies flat on the ground while you’re standing. Although some people do not experience pain or problems, others can suffer from a variety of aches and issues. Fortunately, a number of treatment options are available.

Here at PMC Foot and Ankle Clinic located in Spring, Texas, Dr. Eric Blanson and our highly skilled staff provide personalized care in a family-style atmosphere to meet all your foot and ankle needs. We treat everything from common ailments like bunions and hammertoes to joint pain and sports injuries. We can also diagnose and provide care for flat feet.

Flat feet

Also known as fallen arches, flat feet occur when there is no arch or when the arch is very low. 

Babies are born with flat feet, and for most people, arches develop during childhood. For others, however, this doesn't happen for a variety of reasons, ranging from loose ligaments and a tight Achilles tendon to genetics and not enough exercise. 

Other people can develop flat feet in adulthood because of a number of factors like aging, being obese, hurting your foot, or having arthritis and/or diabetes. Most often in adulthood it happens over a long period of time as the tendons are weakened from wear-and-tear.

Health issues

The arches in the feet work to distribute body weight evenly and allow for ease in walking. For some people, having flat feet can lead to a wide range of health-related issues. These can include site-specific problems like bunions, plantar fasciitis, and hammertoe as well as larger complaints like inflammation of soft tissue, weakness of the foot or leg, and chronic pain in the feet, knees, hips, and lower back. Abnormal walking patterns may also result. In addition, flat feet and the challenges they cause can make falls, accidents, and injuries more likely.

Diagnosis and treatment

Flat foot is typically diagnosed through a physical exam and an X-ray to determine the cause. Because children's feet are still developing, they often benefit from treatments like custom shoe insoles, support braces, exercise, and more.

For adults, the goal is to prevent the arches from flattening any further. Noninvasive treatments may include custom orthotics, support braces, and physical therapy along with weight loss and medication, if appropriate, as well as modification to daily activity. 

In severe cases in children and adults, we will explore surgical options.

If you have flat feet and find yourself with foot problems or other pain, call our office at 832-224-5604, or click our “Book Online” button today to explore possible treatments.

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