Parents usually think children would outgrow their baby foot problems with age. It is not entirely wrong though. When children first start walking, it is customary for them to tread with their feet apart and arms stretched to aid them to balance. These minor baby walking problems or any paediatric foot deformities often correct themselves. Even problems like a flat foot in children, foot pain or growth pains at night are cured with passing age.
However, every baby foot problem should not be left out to natural healing. Experts say paediatric foot pain is a warning sign that tissue damage has occurred or is about to occur. It is our body’s way of informing that something is wrong!
Here are 10 basic baby foot problems that are common in nature, but need to be taken care of as soon as possible.
Having a flat foot is a normal part of the growth progression in children. Most children go through a stage of ‘flat-feet’ in the pre-school years. Many children with on-going flat feet have no symptoms. However, the worry with flat feet is when the biomechanics of the foot are causing pain and dysfunction. Look for an awkward walking or running style in your child or observe if they are complaining of pain or cramping.
These are often termed as growing pains where the tissues are growing too quickly. Growth spurts are common in every kid. However, child foot pain at nights can be caused by excessive physical activities too, like running, jumping, climbing etc. When these fatigued muscles recover at night, pain is felt.
It is a kind of corns and calluses with a circular thick skin under the toes that create discomfort while weight-bearing. It is usually a viral infection. It has tiny black dots within the skin lesions. Warts generally occur on the foot sole as this area is most susceptible to microtrauma.
Pain in the heels can be caused by an inflamed area of the heel bone (called plantar fasciitis) where a thick band of tissue is attached. It is very common in adolescence and is termed as Sever’s Disease. It is caused by strain from the Achilles tendon, which attaches to the back of the heel.
Ingrown Toenails or Pigeon Toes foot problem can affect anyone regardless of age. However, it is frequently seen in children, especially teenagers. This may be due to footwear, as kids are more likely to experience tight-fitting shoes for growth spurts. In this particular issue, the edge of a nail, usually on the big toe, grows into the skin adjacent to it.
The cause of Blount is still unknown to medical practitioners. It is a condition that affects the tibia bone in the lower leg when the child is about 2-years old. It can appear suddenly and becomes worse fast. Rickets are a bone growth ailment usually caused by lack of vitamin D or calcium in the body. It causes severe bowing of the legs and muscle pain.
A Bunion is a deformity of the joint at the base of the big toe. This can be taken care of by wearing wide-toed shoes and taking the pressure off the toe. Hallux Valgus, as it is scientifically called, is a problem where the big toe shifts towards the second toe till the extent of overlapping, due to bone joint deformities.
Genu Valgus, as it is scientifically called, Knock Knees are a common problem among children of 3 to 6 years while the body grows to a natural alignment shift. Treatment is not much required as they get cured on their own.
Limping or walking on their toes is pretty common among toddlers when they learn to walk. It is especially common during the second year. Occasional toe walking should not be a cause for concern, but kids who walk on their toes almost all the time and continue after 3 should consult a podiatrist.
Ankle pain is quite common among baby foot problems and it usually gets a natural cure post-adolescence. The ankle is a hinge joint that connects the tibia and fibula bones and provides stability as well as feet mobility.