As a Podiatrist in Anchorage, I treat children of all age groups. Children with strong, healthy feet avoid many kinds of lower extremity problems later in life. That’s why it is important to inspect your children’s feet.
The size and shape of your baby’s feet change quickly during their first year. Because a baby’s feet are flexible, too much pressure or strain can affect the shape of their feet. It’s important to allow baby to kick and stretch their feet freely. Also, make sure shoes and socks do not squeeze the toes.
Do not to force a toddler to walk before they are ready. Once walking begins, watch the toddler’s gait. Many toddlers have a pigeon-toe gait, which is normal. Some initially learn to walk landing on their toes instead of their heels. Most children outgrow both these problems. But other conditions detected early can be treated more easily.
When Foot Care Is Needed
To help with flatfeet, special shoes or orthotics may be prescribed. To correct mild in-toeing or out-toeing, your toddler may need to sit in a different position while playing or watching TV.
The foot’s bone structure is well-formed by the time your child reaches age 7 or 8. Remember to check your child’s shoe size often. Make sure there is space between the toes and the end of the shoe and that the shoes are roomy enough to allow the toes to move freely.