In-Toeing in Children: What You Should Know

Have you been noticing that your child tends to walk on the insides of their feet? In-toeing is a common childhood foot condition that your child will most likely outgrow as they grow older and their feet mature and develop.  If there is a family history of foot, ankle or leg problems, they may not grow out of this condition.  However, if your child is consistently walking on the inside of their feet and it is creating pain or possible risk for their foot health, you should schedule an appointment with our office to have your child’s feet evaluated. Podiatrist Harvey Danciger can evaluate and determine the cause for your child’s in-toeing tendency.

Usually, in-toeing is caused by the following factors:

1. Hooked foot. This condition is created due to the position of the baby before birth.  It causes the foot to form into a hook-like position. In-toeing results when your child learns to walk due to the curved shape of the outside of their foot. Usually, hooked feet become better and correct themselves with age, normally in baby’s first few years of life. Although rare, hooked feet can become stiff which then requires casting treatment to correct.

2. Tibial Torsion. This condition occurs when there is an inward twist to your child’s lower leg that causes them to in-toe. It’s a common condition during infancy or childhood that may or may not require treatment. Tibial Torsion straightens a certain amount during childhood naturally to some degree, however, if there is excessive internal tibial torsion, the child will need to be treated to have the best chance of developing without intoeing.

3. Femoral Torsion. This condition occurs when the twist of the thigh bone causes an inward rotation of the leg and therefore, in-toeing.  Femoral torsion tends to be more severe when the child is at the ages of five or six, but is mostly outgrown by age ten. Treatment is usually not needed as the condition naturally corrects itself.

There are multiple causes for in-toeing to occur in your child.  It’s important to know that each are completely common occurrences that won’t affect the normal growth and development of your child in most instances.  They also usually don’t require invasive treatment to correct. However, if you are concerned about your child’s in-toeing tendencies, or would like more information about the condition, contact our office to set up an appointment with Dr. Danciger.

Dr. Harvey Danciger
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Dr. Harvey Danciger is a podiatrist and foot surgeon in Palm Desert, CA specializing in the foot and ankle
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