Evaluating and screening children’s feet is very important for prevention of adult foot pathology (i.e. Bunions. Hammertoes.)
Most children will not complain of foot problems, as the soft tissue and bony adaptations have not yet begun, but children may awake at night, or complain of foot or leg pain if increased walking or activity occurs. Many mechanical foot deformities can impact posture, and create overuse injuries in the child from the foot upwards into the rest of the lower extremity. Common overuse pediatric injuries and conditions, can occur at the growth plates like the heel, knee or even in the hip area. Many of these injuries can be traced back at least in part to faulty foot mechanics.
Our office performs proper biomechanical evaluation of the lower extremity and feet for our pediatric patients, and can evaluate proper fit for athletic and school shoes. For children, prevention of injuries by proper mechanical evaluation is the key to preventing injuries and musculoskeletal complaints. When the evaluation determines that they are needed, utilizing foot orthotics for pediatric foot conditions is very proactive and cost effective.
We also screen all pediatric patients for any scoliosis or curvature in the back or pelvis. This should be conservatively cared for, and watched and treated with proper shoes, lifts and/or orthotic devices.