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Jul 11

APMA Staff

Why Do My Kid's Feet Hurt?

by APMA Staff

Why Do My Kid’s Feet Hurt?

Is it just a bruise or something more?

“My feet hurt!”

You’ve been hearing that a lot lately. Your kid fell on his bike a few days ago and keeps complaining. You’ve rubbed some cream on his feet and tried every other method you could think of, but nothing seems to be working. Unfortunately, it’s a holiday weekend and your regular physician isn’t available. Should you head to the emergency room? Or try something else?

Although we always suggest getting a doctor’s opinion if one is available, we realize that there are many situations where that isn’t an option. This blog should help you recognize the most common types of foot problems in kids so that you can make the call on whether a trip to the hospital is needed.

1. Sever’s Disease

Also known as calcaneal apophysitis, this condition can appear in active children, especially those undergoing the growth spurt of adolescence. Kids that play sports or are involved with dance may be more at risk for the disease due to overuse of the bone and heel tendons. The condition manifests as an inflammation in the growth plate of growing kids. This results in heel pain, and, if left untreated, difficulty walking or walking with a limp.

In order to be diagnosed, a doctor will have to look at the heel and perform a squeeze test, which involves testing to see if squeezing both sides of the rear part of the heel at the same time results in pain. Treatment can involve many methods depending on the severity of the condition, from heel elevation and rest to physical therapy and foot orthotics. However, in the end, the disease is self-recovering and will go away once the bone is done growing.

2. Flat Feet

Flat feet are usually not diagnosed until a child is at least 10 years old (when they fully develop). The condition is hereditary and can affect daily activities such as walking, running, and balance.

Treatment is necessary if the flat feet begin to cause pain, and consists of orthotic inserts or supportive shoes. One foot being flatter than the other is also a concern, as this can lead to a lack in stability.

3. Bunions

As is the case with adults, bunions (also known as hallux valgus), are quite common with kids. Bunions are the visible bony bump found on the joint at the base of the big toe, or occasionally on the side of the foot, along with less visible underlying bone changes. Symptoms include pain, redness, burning, and partial loss of feeling in the big toe due to the bunion rubbing against shoes.

Diagnosis is fairly simple, as doctors can identify the condition on sight. Treatment for bunions in children involves walking barefoot, supportive shoes, orthotic inserts, and exercises. On occasion, medical intervention may be necessary for severe cases.

Sort out your child’s foot problems at our clinic in Edmonds, WA

Is your child dealing with painful foot injuries? The trained specialists at Ankle & Foot of Edmonds can answer all of your questions. Call 425-775-6996, or complete our online form to set up an appointment.



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