From infancy through early childhood, children’s feet are growing and developing. While some conditions that affect adult feet can also affect children’s feet, there are other ailments that are specific to children. At Edmond/Norman Foot & Ankle Clinic we urge parents to be vigilant about their children’s podiatric health and inspect feet frequently for any changes or abnormalities. Watch for decreases in activity level and remember that there is no such thing as “normal” pain. Pain is the sign of a problem and if it persists for more than a few days or impedes your child’s ability to walk you should make an appointment at either our Edmond or Norman office so that our board certified podiatrist, Dr. A Bil Buksh can examine your child’s feet. Here are 5 foot ailments to be on the lookout for:
- Ingrown Toenail—a nail that curves downward and starts to grow back into the skin is ingrown. If the nail breaks the skin, an infection can develop. Redness, swelling, pain, and pus can all signal an ingrown nail. Do not try to dig out the nail on your own—this is a job for the podiatrist.
- Warts—although warts can appear on any part of the foot, the most common kind, Plantar Warts, usually form on the bottom of the foot. These warts can form very deep in the skin and cause your child pain when standing or walking. Plantar warts are recognizable by the tiny black pinpoint dots in the center of them.
- Pigeon Toeing—an infant’s foot or feet turning inward can simply be the result of crowding in the womb and will resolve on its own before the baby’s first birthday or it can be the sign of more serious foot condition, such as clubfoot. It’s best to have in toeing evaluated and monitored by the foot doctor who will decide if and when treatment is necessary.
- Pediatric Flatfoot—just like in adults, flat foot occurs when there is a lack of arch support. In children, however, often there will be no pain. Some children complain of cramping in their feet, knees, or legs. You may also notice that your child seems to run or walk awkwardly or has difficulty participating in sports and other physical activities.
- Sever’s Disease—also known as Calcaneal apophysitis, this is an inflammation of the heel’s not–yet-fully- developed growth plate. It most commonly affects children between the ages of 8 and 14 and is very painful. Children who participate in activities that place repetitive stress on the heel are more prone to this condition.
Remember, your child’s feet are the foundation of a healthy body. For more information about pediatric foot health, contact our office or visit our website.