Nowadays, with the development of human living conditions, many people will pay more attention to their health, including their feet health. As we all know, the arch is a necessary structure of the human foot. The foot is elastic with a foot arch. It can not only absorb the impact force of the ground on the foot but also lock the midfoot joint to make the foot harder and better promote the human body. Today, we are going to talk about flat feet, which is one kind of foot disease.
What are flat feet? Flat feet, also known as platypodia, refers to a deformity in which the arch of the foot is flat or disappears, the foot is valgus, and the arch collapses when standing or walking, causing foot pain. Many flat feet, especially children, have no symptoms and do not need treatment. Only a small number of children with flat feet may gradually cause changes in the overall body posture. Some flat feet may combine with the abnormal bone structure of the foot, such as vertical talus and tarsal. Bone joint etc. Among adult flat feet, more women are over 50. When the adult flat foot is onset, the arch of the foot is present in the non-weight bearing state, and the foot arch disappears after the weight is loaded. At this time, due to the existence of joint mobility, it is called reversible flat feet or flexible flat feet. If there is a joint disease, limited mobility, and deformity that cannot restore, it is called rigid flat feet.
What are the diagnostic criteria for flat feet? Common symptoms of flat feet, such as abnormal gait, plantar pain, and local skin redness, are suspected to be flat feet if the patient has these symptoms. When a patient with flat feet is standing, the doctor visually observes that there is no depression on the inside of the arch of the foot, and there is no blank area indicating that the flat feet are more severe. When X-ray and CT examinations showed that the arch angle for the patient was less than the natural, we can diagnose as flat feet.
But how flat feet formed? Flat feet can be congenital or acquired. Arches for children often shaped at the age of 4 to 6, and most children and adolescents have flat feet. Adult flat feet can be the continuation of children’s flat feet, or it may be caused by other reasons that lead to the collapse of the arch. Symptomatic adults with secondary flat feet are called adult acquired flat feet. There are many reasons for the secondary arch collapse, such as joint degeneration, trauma, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, neuropathy, tumor, and posterior tibial tendon insufficiency.
What is the best treatment for flat feet? The early detection of flatfoot is necessary. After the discovery, people should take examination and treatment to clarify the cause and prevent possible irreversible bone and joint diseases, not only for adults but also for children and adolescents. Footpads are a more commonly used non-surgical treatment, which can relieve pain and support the arch of the foot to improve the position of the dislocated joint. Besides, wearing shoes with stiff soles can achieve strong support for the sole, and shoes with the sole of the rocking chair can reduce the stress on the ankle during walking. For people with diseased ankles, walking boots is one workable method to relieve symptoms when orthotics such as foot pads cannot completely correct the abnormal position of the talus and restore the normal arch of the foot.
If you have soft flat feet (not completely stiff) and need to stand or walk for a long time, consider customizing a pair of orthopedic insoles. This kind of insole is neither too hard nor too soft. It can support the arch of the footwell and improve the mechanical mechanism of standing, walking, and running. Orthotic insoles provide cushioning and some shock absorption function, and can also reduce the possibility of problems with other joints such as the ankle, knee, hip, and lumbar spine. Corrective insoles and similar supports cannot reverse the structural deformation of the foot, nor can they reconstruct the arch of the foot after long-term use. Health experts who help patients customize orthopedic insoles include podiatrists, osteopaths, doctors, chiropractors, and physical therapists. Usually speaking, the insole that comes with the shoe must be taken out from the shoe before the orthopedic insole can be substituted. Some health insurance plans will include custom orthopedic appliances. If your insurance does not cover this service, you may wish to consider buying ready-made orthopedic insoles. They are not that expensive, but they can also provide proper arch support. Studies have shown that these finished products have the same effects as customized orthopedic insoles in some cases.
For severe deformities, if non-surgical treatment fails, the appropriate surgery can be selected according to the type of lesion. A series of soft tissue and bone reconstruction operations can reconstruct the position of the arch of the foot. In recent years, we have applied many subtalar joint stabilization operations by placing a subtalar joint brake in the tarsal tube, which can effectively reset and stabilize the talus. The suitable age for children with subtalar joint stabilizers to treat flat feet is 6 to 12 years old. Because of the subsequent shaping and transformation of the body, children can reconstruct the arch of the foot, even though the stabilizer is taken out, the foot arch can still keep in the natural position. The operation is simple, less traumatic, less complication, and more accurate and satisfactory. But for adult flatfoot patients with fixed foot deformities or joint disease, the subtalar joint stabilizer needs to be used in conjunction with other bony or soft tissue surgeries to achieve the desired effect.
The genetic factors or acquired factors can cause flat feet. Generally, genetic ones cannot be averted. However, this disease can be prevented by changing bad lifestyle habits, perform functional exercises for the internal and external muscles of the foot, such as foot plantar walking, plantar flexion exercises, and heel-lifting external rotation exercises. At the same time, select shoes with good arch support and avoiding standing for too long, etc., have a specific significance in the prevention of flat feet.
Here recommend a pair of flat feet orthotic insoles.
BEST ORTHOTIC INSOLES FOR WOMEN & MEN IN 2021