flat foot

A flat foot is a condition where the longitudinal arch or instep of the foot collapses and comes in contact with the ground. In infants and toddlers, the longitudinal arch is not developed and flat feet are normal. In some individuals, the longitudinal arch never develops.

A flat foot does not cause pain or other problems. Flat feet may be associated with pronation, a leaning inward of the ankle bones toward the center line.

Signs of a flat foot

Some common symptoms are:

  • a flat look to one or both of your feet
  • uneven shoe wear and collapse of your shoe toward the inside of your flat foot
  • lower leg pain
  • pain on the inside of your ankle
  • swelling along the inside of your ankle
  • foot pain

Causes of flat feet?

Painful flat feet in children may be caused by a condition called tarsal coalition. Tarsal coalition is a condition where two or more of the bones in the foot fuse together, limiting motion and often leading to a flat foot.

Flat feet can also be caused by fallen arches. Years of wear and tear can weaken the tendon that is responsible for shaping the arch. Fallen arches can also be caused by injury such as inflammation of the tendons in the foot.

Best sneakers for flat feet

  • Asics Gel Kayano 24
  • Brooks Adrenaline GTS 18
  • Asics Gel DS Trainer 23
  • Mizuno Wave Catalyst 2
  • Brooks Beast 16
  • Saucony Redeemer ISO 2
  • New Balance Vazee Prism v2

Treatment options for flat feet

Flexible flat feet that are painless do not require treatment. If flat feet cause pain, an evaluation with a health care provider is needed to determine the cause. The exact treatment will depend on the cause of the flat feet. Some common treatments are: shoe inserts, ankle braces, rest, surgery, pain medication, and anti-inflammatory medication.

Complications of flat feet

In some cases, complications may occur. Common complications of having flat feet are:

  • Inflammation and pain in the ligaments in the soles of your feet
  • Achilles and posterior tibial tendinitis
  • Shin splints
  • Stress fractures in your lower leg
  • Bunions
  • Calluses

Questions to ask your doctor

  • What caused my flat feet?
  • Will insoles help give my feet support and lessen the pain?
  • Should I see a specialist (foot doctor)?
  • What are my treatment options?
    • Will the medicine interact with my current prescriptions?
    • Is CBD a viable option for foot pain?
  • Should I be worried?
  • Do I need to wear different shoes?
  • Will different socks help?