School is barely in session and already my Grapevine office is overrun with kids. Lots and lots of kids! We joked Wednesday afternoon that I think I saw the entire 4th, 5th, and 6th grade in one afternoon. It really did seem that every patient that day was around 10 years old! As I was giggling with another patient, who thought she had mistakenly walked into a pediatrician's office, she really made me aware that most adults don't realize that kids have foot issues. She asked why they were all there and what kinds of things kids come in with, then laughingly suggested that they couldn't all have ingrown toenails!
After I stopped laughing, I thought I would enlighten my readers on the kinds of problems kids have with their feet. In fact, if you happen to have kids, a great way to educate yourself and them is to ask for a copy of our free coloring book with fun bunny pictures and lots of information about childhood foot issues. Here is a good summary to tide you through until you get your free coloring book.
Kids have foot pain just like adults, but because of their rapidly growing bones and tendons, they often have confusing symptoms and need to be treated in different ways.
Some kids are just born with, to put it simply, jacked up feet. Arches that are really high (caves feet) or practically non-existent (flat feet or calcaneal valgus) are common, with varying symptoms. Some kids walk and run really strange, often tripping and falling. Some kids have severe problems fitting shoes or wearing them out rapidly. Many kids experience "growing pains" or cramps in their feet and lower legs - these are never normal despite what many pediatrician's are taught to believe. Heavier kids have more foot related issues, but skinny kids have foot pain too.
Kids with abnormal feet and gait issues often suffer from traveling pains and overuse sports injuries.
The most common is calcaneal apophysitis, a.k.a. Sever's disease, a.k.a. pediatric heel pain. These kids have pain in their growth plate that worsens with activity. I saw a lot of this in the last few days due to early season football and soccer. The cleats and the increases activity are the beginning of the perfect storm of pediatric heel pain. Add to that the love of barefoot and flip flops, we have an early Fall epidemic of heel pain. The good news is that pediatric heel pain is often pretty easy to treat if you focus on the cause, improper biomechanics, or simply said, jacked up feet.
Other common foot type related ailments seen in kids are posterior tibial tendinitis (pain and swelling in the largest tendon that holds up your arch), Achilles tendinitis (pain in the largest tendon on the back of your heel), shin splints (pain in the front of your shin bone or lower legs), and Osgood-schlatter's disease (pain and swelling in the growth plate just below your knee). These are also treated primarily by realigning the biomechanics of the child's foot.
Kids with gait issues may in-toe or out-toe causing muscle and joint imbalances. Some kids are even chronic toe walkers. These types of issues can be foot type related or can be caused by some underlying nerve issues. Orthotics (shoe inserts to balance abnormal foot function) and physical therapy are usually very helpful.
Of course, kids also can suffer from traumatic sprains and strains as well as stress fractures and fractures. No one is immune to fall down and go boom!
What else do we see in kids? Lots and lots of ingrown toenails and pesky warts. Skin and nail issues are abundant and seem to be ignored all summer long. I implore all parents to take a look at their kid's feet and nails. Little problems become big headaches when not addressed. A simple ingrown toenail can become a huge abscess when picked at repeatedly by your child.
So while I replenish my kids treat drawer and balloon stash, remember that kids have lots of foot issues too and at Foot and Ankle Associates of North Texas, we treat lots of kids! Request a free coloring book for your kids and don't ignore their feet!
PS. Just so Moms and Dads don't feel left out, we have a free book for you too. Just request a copy of Got Feet for yourselves. No pictures to color, but lots of great information!
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Foot and ankle athletic injuries are very common. We specialize in sports medicine getting you back to sports as soon as possible. The most common foot and ankle sports injuries are plantar fasciitis, ankle sprains, shin splints, Achilles tendonitis, peroneal tendonitis, stress fractures, posterior tibial tendonitis, anterior tibial tendonitis, neuromas, tarsal tunnel syndrome, ankle instability, and metatarsalgia. Gait problems can also cause ileotibial band syndrome, patella tendonitis, back pain, hip pain and piriformis syndrome. Medications, injections, splinting, orthotics and/or physical therapy are often quite helpful in treating most injuries. Our doctors will discuss your injury and prescribe a course of treatment that will return you to sport stronger than when you came into the office.
Fall down, go boom? Foot and ankle trauma is extremely common no matter how young or old you are. Fractures, torn ligaments and tendons, sprain and strains, puncture wounds and toenail trauma occurs every day. Our physicians can help put you back together so that you can recover from your accident as fast as possible. Don't wait too long to seek medical advice after your accident or injury. Delaying treatment often only worsens the problem!
Foot pain related to congenital and acquired foot and ankle deformities is extremely prevalent in our society. Pain can be from flat feet or a high arched foot and associated gait problems; or be from a progressive deformity like a bunion or a hammertoe. Our doctors are extensively trained to diagnose and treat the underlying deformity to help you function at your best. We want to prevent your problems from getting worse, no matter what you inherited from your family! God may have had a sense of humor when he created your feet, but we will work with you to optimize your biomechanical function and aesthetics! No one should suffer from ugly, painful feet!
Neurological foot and ankle issues can be a burning or shooting pain, numbness, weakness or just a "pins and needles" sensation. Nerve can be affected by compression at the spine level, knee level, ankle level or in your foot. Neuropathy can be a subtle nerve degeneration from aging, diabetes, and a myriad of other causes. Do not assume your nerve issues will go away or that nothing can be done. A proper diagnosis can lead to alleviation of your nerve troubles.
Healthy Steps Shoe Store and Spa welcomes patients and their families as well as the surrounding communities of Grapevine, Southlake, Colleyville and beyond to help them with their therapeutic shoe gear needs. A certified pedorthotist is always available by appointment for consultation, and safe pedicures by a licensed medical nail technician highlight your spa experience. An extensive array of prefabricated and custom orthotics as well as many foot care essentials are also readily available to compliment your shoe and sandal purchases. We carry a wide variety of comfort shoe gear that are as pretty as they are comfortable.