Fallen arches happen for different reasons. You might be born with flat feet, or you might develop them in later life. Your arches can also flatten out due to an injury to the tendon that runs along the bottom of your foot. The injury might be acute, or it could be due to obesity or repetitive motion. The condition can affect one foot or both. Here are some of the symptoms of fallen arches and what your podiatrist can do to treat them.
Symptoms You Might Experience with Fallen Arches
When the problem is caused by an injury to your tendon, you'll probably have soreness and pain, especially when you put all your weight on your feet when walking or running. The pain may begin in your ankle and extend under the sole of your foot. Your foot may also feel weak, and you could have trouble with certain foot movements, like standing on your toes. Your foot will also change its appearance and develop a flatness in the midsection where the arch should be. You can test this yourself by walking on paper or a sidewalk with wet feet. The middle portion of the print you leave behind is usually missing because the arch doesn't touch the ground when you walk. If you see the full shape of the bottom of your foot, you could have a fallen arch.
Treatments a Podiatrist Can Offer
If an injury is to blame, then treating the injured tendon is required. This could involve staying off your foot as much as possible so it can heal. You may have to wear a cast that holds your arch in the proper position as your foot heals. Other treatments include wearing an orthotic device in your shoe that lifts the heel and supports the arch. You may need to have custom inserts or shoes made to fit your foot, and you may need to wear these devices for the rest of your life so you can walk without pain.
If you haven't had an injury, the treatment your podiatrist recommends depends on the type of problem you have and whether it is severe and progressive. You might be encouraged to lose weight and get other medical problems such as diabetes under control. If your condition is severe, surgery might be indicated. Surgery can remove damaged tissue, repair the tendon, or fuse bones to restore the function of the arch in your foot.
If you're having ankle or foot pain, it's a good idea to have your foot examined by a podiatrist so you can undergo treatment before serious damage is done to your tendons or bones. Several conditions can cause foot pain, and pinpointing the cause is the first step to healing the condition so you can stay active and free of pain.
If you're interested in finding out more, visit a site such as http://www.camdencountyfootandankle.com.