We only have one set of feet and ankles to last us a lifetime. While they are intricately and amazingly designed to help us get through life, there are many conditions and injuries that can happen over time. What many people do not know is that close to 90% of foot ailments begin in childhood.
Our office is dedicated to serving the foot and ankle needs of your whole family. If your child is experiencing any pain or developing symptoms that are of concern to you, please contact our office immediately. Early detection of foot problems and defects allows for effective treatment to be applied quickly and will help your child enjoy normal healthy feet as an adult. Call our office in Palm Desert, CA at (760) 568-0108 with any questions or to schedule an appointment.
Development in the Early Years
In addition to the many milestones that happen, the first year of your child’s life is very important with regard to their foot health. A child’s foot reaches almost half of its adult size in just twelve months. During this stage, bones are very flexible and can be affected by abnormal pressures. Certain clothing, socks and shoes can impact proper foot development. At this time, it is important to take note of any lower-extremity abnormality. A severe deformity will be noticed at birth and can be treated right away to allow for normal development in later years. Other times, certain symptoms or a gait abnormality are not diagnosed and treated until the child starts walking.
There are many problems that can be recognized and treated before the walking stage, and sometimes treatment becomes more difficult if you wait beyond that point. For this reason, we encourage parents to contact our office with even the slightest question or concern in case there is a problem, so we can begin therapies and treatment immediately.
Conditions That Deserve Immediate Attention
As your child is growing and developing, we want you to contact Dr. Harvey Danciger if you notice any abnormal curvatures of the feet. The outside border of the bottom of an infant’s foot should be straight. If you see a curve, it could mean an abnormal bone alignment that needs to be treated. This may involve stretching exercises, splinting or casting. Seek treatment immediately if you notice any toes that are curled, overlapping or in the wrong position.
A precursor to flatfoot is a deformity called Talipes Calcaneovalgas and it is often overlooked. Failure to address this deformity can eventually lead to the development of bunions, hammertoes, heel pain and arch pain. Early treatment can prevent these unsightly and painful problems from developing later in life.
Symptoms worth Investigating
Children and adolescents often don’t stop moving for long and may not share that they are experiencing foot pain. It may be a subtle change that will alert you that a problem is occurring. Take note if your child does not want to engage in activity or suddenly becomes inactive. There are several problems that can develop due to weight gain, overuse and posture changes. Contact us if you notice your child tripping or stumbling, or if there is an intoeing or outoeing positioning of their feet. Abnormal shoe wear or breakdown could indicate a gait abnormality that needs to be treated, and don’t ignore any complaints of leg pains or cramps as just “growing pains.”
Our caring staff is here for your family. We want to do all that we can to help your children put their best foot forward and stay active and involved in the things they love to do. Contact Dr. Harvey Danciger at our office in Palm Desert, CA at (760) 568-0108 with any questions, concerns or to make an appointment.