Flatfeet, also known as fallen or low arches, affect millions of people. While some individuals with the condition experience no troublesome symptoms, others suffer from chronic foot pain. If flatfeet are causing you discomfort or gait problems, here are suggestions that may provide relief.
3 Ways to Help Fallen Arches
1. Foot Exercises
Depending on the cause of your flatfeet, stretching and training exercises may ease your symptoms. Your foot doctor might recommend physical therapy to help you practice movements that can strengthen your arch muscles, such as rolling a ball under the sole of your foot or repeatedly lifting your heels while seated. If your fallen arches are accompanied by a shortened Achilles tendon, stretching and bolstering it with exercises like calf raises may reduce your foot pain.
2. Arch Support
When shopping for footwear, avoid flat sandals that provide no support. You should also avoid any styles that are excessively soft or cushioned. Instead, look for shoes that offer structure and help the foot maintain proper shape. Over-the-counter arch supports and insoles can also be inserted into your shoes. If these don’t reduce your foot pain, your podiatrist may prescribe custom orthotic devices to stabilize your flatfeet.
3. Surgical Options
If low arches are causing severe foot pain that interferes with your day-to-day activities and isn’t responding to the treatments above, your podiatrist may suggest flatfoot reconstruction surgery. This involves replacing the instep tendon and repositioning the heel bone to support the arch. Other surgical treatments for flatfeet include fusing arthritic joints, repairing torn arch ligaments, and inserting a stent between the ankle and heel to realign the foot.
With two locations in Rochester and Fairport, NY, Advanced Foot Care Center of Rochester, offers a gentle, effective approach for a wide range of foot ailments. Podiatrist Dr. Joseph G. DiPrima has 33 years of experience in treating foot pain caused by plantar fasciitis, nerve damage, and flat feet. Call (585) 249-0020 today to schedule an appointment with this Monroe County expert, or visit the practice’s website to learn more about the conditions they treat.