Flat feet are when a person's entire sole touches the floor when standing. This can be problematic for many individuals, just ask Dr. George Abboud of New England Foot & Ankle Specialists in Reading, MA.
What are the symptoms of flat feet?
Flat feet aren't usually painful unless you're playing a sport or doing any sort of walking activity, but there are several other symptoms to note:
- Discomfort because shoes feel uneven
- Feet tire easily
- Painful in arches, heels, and back
Symptoms of flat feet manifest during late childhood. If a toddler or young child experiences foot pain, you may need to visit your Reading podiatrist.
What causes flat feet?
Flat feet may be a result of many things:
- A congenital defect
- Damaged, inflamed, stretched, or torn tendons
- Broken or dislocated bones
- Health conditions: obesity, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis
- Nerve problems
How are flat feet diagnosed?
Podiatrists use several tools and tests during your physical examination, like x-rays and MRIs.
What are treatment options?
There are several treatment options, some invasive and others conservative.
Conservative methods include:
- Orthotic arch support
- Physical therapy
- Foot exercises
- Over-the-counter pain medication
- Injected medications
- Braces or casts
Invasive methods come down to surgery. If painful flat feet don't respond to non-operative measures, speak with your podiatrist about surgery, like:
- Fusing bones together
- Removing bones or growths
- Changing the shape of the bone
- Using tendons from other parts of your body to help form an arch
- Grafting bone
Need a consultation?
Flat feet are painful and you don't need to live with that sort of discomfort. If you have any questions or concerns about flat feet, you should contact your Reading, MA, podiatrist, Dr. George Abboud. He can help examine, diagnose, and treat you or a loved one's foot problems. For more information or to schedule an appointment at New England Foot & Ankle Specialists, call (781) 944-4044.