At this time of year when children are going back to school, parents should be reminded to have their kids seen by a podiatrist. This is the perfect time to get that yearly check-up and make sure there are no foot, ankle, or leg problems which would interfere with the daily activities and sports your children will be doing at school. If there are problems which are not attended to, this can cause disability and future problems which the child may develop. As activity levels change and increase, more stress is put on the lower extremities, which can then aggravate existing problems and deformities, causing pain, difficulty walking, running or doing normal activities.
At a time when many school districts have less funding for nursing staff and physical education staff, causing a reduction in these personnel, children are at a greater risk for injury. This makes it even more critical to have your children see their podiatrist yearly for examinations.
Younger children can injure themselves while playing sports, and if they have pain and cannot walk, they should be seen to make sure there is no fracture through the growth plate of the bone. The growth plate is a separate area of long bones which allows the bone to grow and reach the adult size, at which point there is no further growth of that bone. Fractures in this area require experience in knowing what to look for on x-rays and through examination, all qualities podiatrist have. We treat the feet and ankles all day and have vast knowledge of the injury mechanisms and what to look for when someone injures their foot or ankle. It is possible to twist and ankle and break the bone up in the leg or in the foot, but the patient may only complain of pain in the ankle. This is where experience counts.
Healthy feet, ankles and legs can help your children grow and develop normally. Isn't this what all parents want for their kids!