"Flat feet" describes the condition in which the arch on the inside of the foot is flattened, which allows the entire bottom of the foot to touch the floor when a person is standing.
Flat feet are very common and, many times, is completely painless.
Causes of flat feet can begin early in a person's life because the arch of the foot develops throughout childhood. Sometimes, the arches never fully develop and one, or both feet, will remain flat into adulthood. Arches can also fall over time as years of wear and tear weaken the tendon that runs from the ankle to the arch.
Causes of flat feet include:
Shortened Achilles tendon
Traumatic injury to the foot or ankle
The condition may be painless, but in other cases, flat feet can cause your ankles to bend inward which throws off the alignment of the legs, causing pain in the joints.
Some common symptoms associated with flat feet are:
Swelling on the inside of the ankle
Difficulty standing on tiptoe
Pain in the heel or arch
Pain in the knees or ankles
Today there are treatments for people who experience pain as a result of flat feet.
Prescribed orthopedic devices, such as shoe inserts and customized arch supports, can help minimize the discomfort for many patients, Stretching exercises, physical therapy and foot gymnasticscan help elongate the Achilles tendon and gradually raise the arch to a normal, comfortable height.
Other flat foot related problems in children should be treated promptly before the bone structure matures.In rare cases, where conservative treatments have not been effective, surgery can provide lasting relief.