Dealing with Flat Feet

A condition that we see frequently at Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center is flat feet. True to its name, “flat feet “describe a deformity in the foot where the arch of the foot is virtually nonexistent when a patient is standing. Although for many patients flat feet are not initially painful, they can lead to pain in the ankle, lower leg or middle of the foot. Having flat feet also makes you more susceptible to some other foot conditions such as plantar fasciitis. In addition to pain, flat feet can cause swelling and a lack of flexibility in the foot.

Who Gets Flat Feet?

There are several possible causes of flat feet. For some patients, the arch of the foot fails to develop properly during childhood. In other cases, it is something that occurs over time as the result of risk factors such as:

  • Heredity
  • Trauma or injury
  • Aging
  • Weight gain or pregnancy
  • Arthritis

What Can be Done?

The course of treatment for flat feet will depend on the severity of the symptoms. Whether you have pain or not, if you notice that your feet seem to be flat and the floor without a normal arch you should contact our Long Beach office so that our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley and Dr. Constance Omelas can examine your feet. Due to the possible genetic component of the condition, the foot doctor will want to get a family medical history as well. At the very least, the podiatrist will want to monitor your flat feet to ensure that a progressive disability does not develop over time. If you do have stiffness or pain the foot doctor may suggest any or all of the following:

  • Stretching
  • Physical therapy
  • Icing
  • Using arch supports or foot braces

If conservative measures don’t work or the arch issue is severe, reconstructive surgery may be an option.

If you have questions about flat feet or want to make an appointment to have your arches evaluated call us at 562-420-9800. We offer appointments before and after work and our helpful staff will work with you to find a time that works best with your busy schedule.