Parents naturally want to do everything they can for their children. From meticulous nutritional planning to hours spent searching for the best daycare center, parents will go to great lengths to give their little ones as much care as possible. Not a lot of parents think about the health of their children’s feet, but it turns out that many of the foot problems adults encounters, such as pain and stiffness, stem from neglect during childhood.
One of the most common foot problems during childhood is flat feet, where the natural arch of the foot disappears whenever the child stands or walks. While this condition is not something parents should ignore, it is pretty easy to deal with flat feet, as long as you have the right knowledge and the right tools.
Some Facts About Flat Feet
When babies are born, many of their bones have yet to develop, including several small bones that make up the arch of the feet. Instead, elastic cartilage supports the foot, and its flexibility means that it will yield under pressure, such as when a toddler stands up. The lack of hard bones is why babies typically have flat feet. Instead of an arch, a pad of fat serves as temporary support.
As children age, bone gradually replaces the soft cartilage, resulting in a permanent arch. However, a small percentage of children fail to develop a full arch. In many of these cases, an arch is only present as long as the foot is not bearing weight; standing or walking causes the arch to collapse. This condition can be normal for many people, and most pursue treatment options only when flat feet cause pain or difficulty in moving.
A Common Misconception
When choosing the best children’s shoes for flat feet, it is important to remember that any kind of support that a shoe may give will not force the feet to form an arch. These shoes merely encourage the foot to develop an arch on its own, help the shoe grip the feet properly, or help relieve any pain. Hence, stay away from shoes with rigid arch supports that claim to mold the feet into an arch. Many of these shoes do more harm than good; considering that children’s feet are still pliable, hard shoes will only cause deformations that can spell foot trouble years down the line.
Characteristics Of The Best Children’s Shoes For Flat Feet
One of the first things you should look out for is whether the shoes are flexible enough. Babies learn to walk by learning how to properly grip the floor, which is why parents should let their children walk and run barefoot in safe areas such as indoors. The best children’s shoes for flat feet do not restrict foot movement in any way, allowing young children to stretch and use their muscles as they train themselves how to walk and run.
Check also for shape and alignment. The best children’s shoes for flat feet have low heels and wide spaces near the toes, enabling more natural movement and preventing the toes from crowding together, which over time can lead to the permanent bending of the toes.
Children move around a lot, and their feet are expected to produce a lot of sweat. To remedy this, the best children’s shoes for flat feet use breathable materials and well-ventilated designs to prevent moisture buildup that can cause odor and infection. These shoes should also be well-padded to avoid pressure points that can otherwise cause permanent damage to the feet.
We hope this article has helped you know more about the condition and has made choosing the best children’s shoes for flat feet a breeze. Happy shopping!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)