A Guide to Navigating Flat Feet Symptoms and Solutions

November 16, 2023
A Guide to Navigating Flat Feet Symptoms and Solutions

It is believed that roughly 25% of people have flat feet. Being “flat footed” means that their feet have a very minimal or non-existent arch, particularly when standing. This condition causes the full foot to be in contact with the ground. 

Flat feet can create a slew of troublesome physical ailments that have a major impact on a person’s knees, back, hips, and ankles. Basic physical activities like dancing, walking, standing, and running can be difficult with flat feet.

This article will offer insight into flat feet symptoms and offer potential solutions.

Flat Feet Symptoms: The Details

Flat feet symptoms may vary depending on the person. It is possible to develop flat feet over time due to aging, developmental disruptions in children, or a foot or ankle injury. Many people also have a genetic predisposition to flat feet. Other risk factors include diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, or obesity. 

For some people, flat feet don’t cause any painful symptoms. In such cases, the condition may not require treatment of any kind. However, symptoms may develop over time. Here are some common symptoms of having flat feet.

Musculoskeletal Issues

When someone has flat feet, the body is thrown out of alignment. It becomes difficult to distribute weight and keep the person balanced healthily properly. This can lead to musculoskeletal problems such as having an unnatural gait or poor posture. These issues can lead to various ankle, knee, hip, and foot conditions that may worsen over time.

Back and Leg Issues

Due to a lack of balance, flat feet can cause your back and legs to suffer. In some cases, basic standing and walking can cause pain. When your arches are properly supported, your legs may rotate inward, which can become a painful habit. 

Strained Muscles

When the body is out of alignment, muscles overcompensate to try and find balance. This can create chronic muscle strains. When muscles have to work harder than they should, they can become tired, sore, and inflamed. 

How to Fix Flat Feet

There are an array of possible treatment plans for flat feet. Here are some examples of how to fix flat feet.

  • Develop a consistent stretching routine. Stretching is a great way to develop strength and mobility in your feet.
  • Try orthotic devices for arch support. Sometimes, all it takes to relieve pain due to flat feet is having a good pair of shoes. Arch support can be placed in your shoes to reduce symptoms of flat feet. 
  • Take medications whenever needed. While over-the-counter medications won’t fix flat feet, they can help soften the physical toll they take on the body. 
  • Consider physical therapy. With the help of a physical therapist, you can learn ways of strengthening tendons and muscles around and in the feet. This can potentially improve your gait and posture, helping to combat the physical issues associated with flat feet. 
  • If weight bearing is painful, consider losing weight. Being overweight can be particularly troublesome for those with flat feet. Putting additional, unnecessary weight on the weight can worsen the symptoms. 
  • Consider surgery if chronic pain persists. Nonsurgical treatments should always be tried before considering surgery. Surgery can potentially fix bone and tendon issues in the foot, effectively lessening the pain. 

Flat Feet? Contact Diablo Foot & Ankle Today

Are you struggling with flat feet? Are the symptoms getting worse? Let Diablo Foot & Ankle help. When symptoms from flat feet get you down, it’s time to turn to a podiatrist who can get you back to enjoying your life again. Our team will help you explore your options and find a treatment plan that is right for you. 

Ready to start feeling better? Contact Diablo Foot & Ankle today!

Common Podiatry Questions

What is a Podiatrist?

A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the foot and ankle.

What does a Podiatrist treat?

A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the medical and surgical care of the feet. They can treat conditions such as ingrown toenails, fungal toenails, bunions, hammertoes, and plantar fasciitis.

What’s the difference between a Podiatrist and Orthopedist?

A Podiatrist and Orthopedist are very similar to each other in many ways. They use most of the same tools and treat a lot of the same conditions. The main difference between the two is their medical training. Podiatrists are trained exclusively on the foot and ankle, whereas the Orthopedic is trained on the whole body with an additional year of training on the foot and ankle.

Where are your Podiatry clinics located?

At Diablo Foot & Ankle, we treat our foot and ankle patients in two main clinic locations in Walnut Creek and in Antioch California. Dr. Eman Elmi and Dr. Shayan Esspoor are Board Certified Podiatrists who specialize in the treatment of foot and ankle disorders.

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