Flat feet, also referred to as flatfoot, pes planus, pronated foot, and fallen arches, is a deformity with various degrees of physical impact. This condition in one or both feet can be passed down as a hereditary trait or may simply develop over time.
You have flat feet when the arches on the inside of your feet are flattened, allowing the entire soles of your feet to touch the floor when you stand up.
A common condition, flat feet can occur when the arches don’t develop during childhood. In other cases, flat feet develop after an injury or over the years ,they start to wear and tear.
Flat feet can sometimes cause pain in your ankles and knees because the condition can alter the alignment of your legs.
Most people that have flat feet experience foot pain, particularly in the heel or arch area. Pain may also worsen with activity and swelling along the inside of the ankle can also occur.
A flat foot is normal in infants and toddlers, because the foot’s arch hasn’t fully developed yet. Most people’s arches develop throughout their childhood, but some people’s feet never develop arches. This is a normal variation in foot type, and people without arches may or may not have problems.
Some children have flexible flatfoot, in which the arch is visible when the child is sitting or standing on tiptoes, but disappears when the child stands. Most children outgrow these flexible flatfoot without having any major problems.
Arches can also fall over time, years of wear and tear can weaken the tendon that runs along the inside of your ankle and helps support your arch.
- Stretching exercises. Some people with flat feet also have a shortened Achilles tendon. Exercises to stretch this tendon may help.
- Choose supportive shoes. Buy shoes with a low to moderate heel, thick soles, good arch support and extra cushioning. Don’t walk barefoot. Sunnywell offers comfort shoes to solve this foot pain.
- Physical therapy. A physical therapist can do a video analysis of how you run to help you improve your form and technique.