Flat feet are a very common foot condition. It affects nearly one quarter of the world’s population. We are all born with flat feet, but develop arches as we get a little bit older. Although some people with flat feet can live their entire lives free of foot injuries, there are others, who develop problems at one time in their lives.
If your feet are flat, your toe bones can shift around. It can also cause your ankle bones to lean inwards, causing pronation. They can also cause tendonitis, shin splints, arthritis, and plantar fasciitis.
Some doctors also blame flat feet on lower back pain, but that is difficult to diagnose unless the patient also complains of foot pain.
What Causes Flat Feet?
Many people inherit flat feet through genetics. It can also be caused by an overused or injured posterior tibial tendon, which in turn, causes your arch to fall.
Treatment for Flat Feet
Here are a few treatment options:
- Stretching of your calf muscle
- Functional orthotics, that are designed to neutralize the abnormal forces that are causing your feet to flatten in the arch area.
- Stretching Exercises – Stretching exercises can help some people, who have problems with a short Achilles tendon.
- Surgery – In extreme cases where the posterior tibial has been torn, a surgery may be necessary.
For most people (about 50% of the flatfoot population) , flat feet never become a medical issue, and most people never think about their flat feet unless they look at them.
However, you should get in contact with your podiatrist if you are having pain or other problems due to flat feet.