|Posted by Happifeet Podiatry on June 19, 2018 at 4:35 AM||comments (3)|
Helpful tips for parents of kids under the age of 3.
Written by one of Happifeet Podiatry’s Senior Podiatrists, Tram Phan (a mother of 2 boys and podiatrist for over 14 years, helping patients of all ages)
Why is it so important to wear correctly fitted shoes as a child?
Each human foot comprises of 26 bones. As a child, these bones are mostly cartilage; as the foot grows that cartilage begins to form its final shape and starts to harden and become bone. To put it simply, your child’s foot is very mouldable and adaptable to whatever shoe shape you put their foot into. If the shoes are too narrow and the wrong shape your child’s soft bones will mould into that narrow shape. If the shoes are too stiff, the muscles will learn to develop differently as they adapt to that stiff shoe. Having the wrong shoes on your child’s foot can lead to abnormal walking patterns like tip-toe-walking, pigeon toe-walking and toe deformities.
Not every pair of feet is the same. Some will need extra depth and height in the shoe because they have a “fleshy/chubby” foot while others need a wider shoe at their toes because their toes splay outwards.
Overall, studies have shown that good quality footwear positively affects the running and walking gait of children. So it is best to give your child the best start in life with good quality shoes. Go for Quality rather than quantity. They just need 2 types of footwear; a fully enclosed shoe and a sandal. These should be checked every 3 months and replaced as soon as they grow out of them so that their toes don’t buckle and curl up at the end of the shoe.
So how do you know which shoes are good for your child?
Firstly, barefoot is best for young children as they need to learn to adapt to different surfaces and develop their proprioception (which is an awareness of their feet in relation to the rest of their body and its surroundings). This helps with co-ordination, muscle strength and good arch development.
So if they need to put on a pair of shoes, it will make the most sense to choose a pair of shoes that will allow the feet to develop the same proprioception and normal development.
The following are a few things to keep in mind when choosing shoes for young children:
1. Most young children’s toes splay out so the shoe shape needs to be like a fan and also splay out so that their toes can wriggle freely.
2. When it comes to the soles of their shoes or sandals, they need to feel the ground so less is more. Have a good material for protection from the hot concrete and rocks at the park but most importantly have a flexible soft sole so that it can be folded in half in your hand.
3. No restrictions around the ankle. Nothing that will pinch or stop them from moving naturally in their shoes.
If you have any further questions or concerns, you can email the team at Happifeet Podiatry – Shoe Shop & Podiatry (Middle Park & Springfield Lakes) on the details below. We are more than happy to help.
Phone: (07) 3818 6300
|Posted by Happifeet Podiatry on March 16, 2018 at 2:15 AM||comments (0)|
As professionals we are not suppose to have favorites but Kris Capri is one of ours.
He is a lovely 37-year-old man who loves collecting Paw Patrol and Yugio cards and is a self-professed expert on anything The Sims or Star Wars related. He also has diabetes and has struggled most of his life to control his weight.
Like a lot people, Kris found that as his weight increased it was harder to be active. Even taking his dog Jett for a causal walk was uncomfortable. “The additional weight load on your feet places a lot of stress & strain on the 52 bones, 66 joints & over 200 muscles, tendons & ligaments that make-up your feet,” says Happifeet Senior Podiatrist, Tram.
But along with his very supportive family, Kris had signed up to a professional weight loss program run by his endocrinologist. Part of his weight loss program is more exercise but with problem feet this was difficult. Happifeet Podiatry was happy to be involved in Kris’s journey and help improve his ability to exercise again.
“Kris admittedly presented with interesting feet”, says Tram. His arches are not flat. He actually has a particular foot structure that results in him rolling out when he walks. This, in combination with his feet turning outwards, results in excessive stress placed on the outside of his ankles. Our goal was to help Kris increase his activity levels without creating pain or discomfort in his feet or ankles.
Our first step was to obtain suitable footwear that would fit his wide and deep foot shape. We measured Kris for a pair of walking shoes from a company called (appropriately) Dr. Comfort. A very distinct brand that specialises in custom fitted footwear. They have a variety of shoe styles & sizes that come in three different widths – Medium, Wide & Extra Wide.
Step 2 was to address Kris’s foot structure. We carried out a biomechanical assessment and took an impression of Kris’s feet. From these measurements we designed a custom made orthotic device that corrected his foot and ankle alignment and restricted how much he rolled his ankle with each step.
[A biomechanical assessment is where measurements are taken from your hips to your feet and then translated into how your entire body moves and functions when you walk and exercise. Our podiatrists use these measurements to determine the prescription and design of your orthotic devices.]
Step 3 was to combine his pair of custom – fitted Dr. Comfort walking shoes with his custom – made Orthotic devices. Once these orthotic devices were carefully positioned into his Dr. Comfort shoes, Kris was able to wear them for everyday use as well as for his regular walks.
Kris has now lost over 22 kilograms since he started this journey a year ago. His blood sugar levels have also reduced and he is well on his way to his goal weight. He even enrolled the help of a little puppy friend, Jett, to keep him motivated on his walks. Well-done Kris! Happifeet Podiatry are all very proud of you.
If you have issues with exercise due to discomfort or pain in your knees, legs, ankles or feet, Contact Happifeet Podiatry on phone 3818 6300 today. Don’t put it off any longer. We can help support you and your feet in feeling comfortable while exercising to keep you Happy, Healthy & Active.
Make 2018 pain free and great!
Happifeet Podiatry is a Shoe Shop & Podiatry Clinic located in Middle Park & Springfield Lakes.