3 Ways to Treat a Fallen Arch
Sagging of the arch or of the longitudinal arch can have an impact on the joints and the pain can be felt in the knee and ankle. Walking and standing can also become difficult. Fortunately, a fallen arch can be treated. The following article will walk you through 3 different ways to deal with it. Do not hesitate to see a specialist if the pain persists.
Diagnosis of a Fallen Arch
A fallen arch can be associated with other conditions such as flat feet or plantar fasciitis. A serious diagnosis is therefore necessary to identify the true nature of the condition in order to provide the appropriate treatment.
The Arch of the Foot May Collapse for Many Reasons:
- Weak musculature of the foot
- excess weight
- Ligamentous laxity
- Tendons that are too short
- Inappropriate shoes
- Prolonged standing
- A fracture of the calcaneus
- Anatomically deviated legs
Fallen Arches Are Often Characterized by:
- The collapse of the longitudinal arch (flat foot)
- The protrusion of the internal malleolus
- Heel deviation
- X-shaped legs
In adulthood, a patient with a fallen arch will feel their feet stretch, and will experience pain in the ankle, knee, and possibly back.
How to Treat Sagging Arch of the Foot?
There are different ways to correct or relieve a fallen arch.
The role of the longitudinal arch is to support the weight of the body and to adapt it to the surface where it is standing. Flat shoes, high heels, and bare feet will increase the body’s pressure on the feet and increase pain and fatigue. Simply wearing the correct footwear can relieve the patient of the discomfort. Ballet flats and high heels should be avoided, especially on long walks.
Custom-Made Plantar Orthotics
Wearing plantar orthotics is not necessary in childhood and adolescence. It is only recommended in adulthood, when the patient experiences pain in the ankle and knees. In addition to correcting collapsed feet, plantar orthotics correct deformities and related mechanical abnormalities. To do this, the podiatrist manufactures custom foot orthotics for each of his patients. Plantar orthotics are molded to the feet for a perfect match.
This practice is particularly suitable for athletes but can be used in addition to podiatry. Taping consists of applying adhesive strips to specific areas of the knee and the arch of the foot. This method eliminates functional pain during intense activities such as jogging or a long walk.
A child rarely experiences pain related to a fallen arch. As a preventive measure, it is still necessary to ensure the proper development of the arch from an early age. Walking barefoot and on a variety of surfaces is one way to exercise the muscles and ligaments of the foot. It is also important to ensure that the child’s shoes are suitable for him and replace them when necessary. Soft soles and shoes that hold the feet well without tightening them are recommended.
Surgery: The Riskiest and the Least Practiced
A fallen arch does not usually require surgery. Flat feet that cause persistent pain in children may, however, require surgery. This is especially the case when other treatments are ineffective.
A fallen arch is usually harmless in children under 12 years old. It becomes more persistent in adulthood, especially in women over 40. The fallen arch itself is not painful but it affects the knees and ankles, which may become painful. The chosen treatment does not attempt to fix the fallen arch, but rather to correct the mechanical problems and imbalances that it causes.