Fallen arches -- a type of flatfoot disorder -- develop during adulthood, but other forms of flatfoot may be present from childhood. Here are five facts to know about fallen arches and flatfoot:
• All types of flatfoot feature collapsed arches -- In adults, wear and tear, or injury to the posterior tibial tendon (PTT), which runs from the calf to the foot and keeps the arch in place, is responsible for most lost arches and cases of flatfoot. If you are a woman, are older than 40 or have obesity, diabetes or high blood pressure, you're more likely to experience damage to the PTT, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
• Losing the arch can lead to more problems -- They include arthritis of the foot or ankle, tendonitis and plantar fasciitis.
• Some people with flatfoot still have an arch -- It's present when they stand on their toes but not when the whole foot is on the ground. That is a common type of flatfoot called flexible flatfoot. When the arch is gone altogether, it's called rigid flatfoot.
• Symptoms can be a pain -- Flatfoot doesn't always cause symptoms, but when it does, they can disrupt the rhythm of daily life. People who have flexible flatfoot, for example, may experience pain in the heel, arch, ankle, shin, outside of the foot, low back, hips or knees, the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons reports.
• Treat yourself -- Absent symptoms, flatfoot usually doesn't need treatment. If it does, an orthopedic surgeon or foot and ankle specialist may recommend wearing removable orthotics in your shoes to support your arches, avoiding activities that cause discomfort and taking ibuprofen or naproxen sodium for pain, among other options. In rare cases, surgery may be necessary.
Are your shoes a good fit for your workout?
If you wear sneakers to go running or running shoes to your spin class, you risk more than poor performance -- you also increase the possibility of injury. Here's how to match footwear to activity for the safest, most effective workout:
• If you're a runner, the American College of Sports Medicine recommends lightweight running shoes featuring an expansive toe box, sufficient width to comfortably accommodate your feet, no motion control or stability in their design, and little to no heel-to-toe drop (the difference between the thickness of the cushion at the heel and the front of the foot).
• Choose sport-specific shoes for your sport of choice, e.g. cycling shoes for road cycling or spinning, basketball shoes for shooting hoops and soccer cleats for soccer.
• For the gym, you want versatile shoes that are appropriate for a variety of activities, from aerobics to strength training. Cross trainers fit the bill, according to the American Council on Exercise.
Dr. Kory Miskin, podiatrist, is accepting new patients in the Siloam Springs area and provides foot and ankle care including ingrown toenail care, wart removal, diabetic limb salvage, general foot and ankle surgery, ankle replacement, reconstructive foot and ankle surgery, and arthroscopic surgery. To schedule an appointment, call 479-553-2664 today.
About Siloam Springs Regional Hospital
Siloam Springs Regional Hospital is a 73 licensed bed facility with 42 private patient rooms. It is accredited by the State of Arkansas Department of Health Services and The Joint Commission. Some services include inpatient and outpatient surgery, emergency medicine, medical, surgical and intensive care units, obstetrics, outpatient diagnostic services and inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation. With more than 50 physicians on the medical staff, Siloam Springs Regional Hospital provides compassionate, customer-focused care. SSRH is an affiliate of Northwest Health, the largest health system in Northwest Arkansas. Siloam Springs Regional Hospital is located at 603 N. Progress Ave. in Siloam Springs. For more information, visit NorthwestHealth.com.