Flat feet are a painful condition that affects a significant part of the global population. Also known as pes planus or fallen arches, flat feet can affect your posture and mobility. They are common among children and adults alike.
Flat Feet: A Closer Look
Various factors, including genetics, pregnancy, and lifestyle, can cause an individual to develop flat feet. They could also result from underlying conditions, such as arthritis, obesity, and muscular dystrophy. You could also develop flat feet due to injuries.
The condition is characterized by a low or negligible arch in your feet. The absence of a proper arch causes pain in your feet when you engage in rigorous physical activities.
Also, people with flat feet often experience pain, stiffness, and swelling in their ankles, hips, lower backs, knees, and calves. That, in turn, can interfere with your ability to walk and affect your quality of life.
The good news is that you don’t have to take a painkiller every time the pain of flat feet becomes unbearable. Nor do you have to undergo surgery to rectify the condition. Simple lifestyle changes, such as using custom-made insoles, can go a long way to relieving flat feet.
In the following sections, we’ll outline a few useful tips to help you deal with flat feet. Let’s dive right in.
1. Consider Custom Orthotics
If you’ve developed flat feet, you know the pain of maintaining your balance while walking. You can alleviate that problem by using custom-made insoles designed to correct flat feet.
Unlike off-the-shelf shoe inserts, custom orthotics are medical devices that support your feet with a substantial arch. That, in turn, minimizes pain and improves your balance and posture. Also, custom insoles can make it easier to engage in other physical activities, such as jogging or running.
If you’re looking for custom-made insoles, make sure you look for a reliable and reputed service that specializes in personalized shoe inserts. Modern custom orthotics services use gait scanning and 3D casting to design an accurate mold for your feet.
Thereafter, the mold is used to develop a custom insole that compensates for the lack of arch in your feet. These insoles are easy to clean, and you can even transfer them from one pair of shoes to another.
2. Watch Your Weight
Being obese or overweight increases your risk of developing flat feet. If you’re already living with the condition, obesity can worsen your symptoms by subjecting your feet to additional stress.
That emphasizes the importance of managing your weight to alleviate flat feet. Besides following an exercise routine, it’s crucial to eat a healthy and balanced diet. Make sure you incorporate plenty of fiber and protein into your diet. Also, avoid eating packaged and processed foods loaded with sugar and preservatives.
If you’re gaining weight due to an underlying condition like hypothyroidism, it’s wiser to consult a medical professional. They’ll help you devise a proper treatment plan to manage the underlying disorder and prevent weight gain.
3. Get Ample Rest
Of course, it isn’t possible for you to sit on a couch throughout the day. You’ve got office meetings, household chores, and a ton of other things to do. But if you’re dealing with flat feet, it’s crucial to let them rest.
Avoid intensive physical activities, such as running or jumping that can aggravate pain and swelling. Instead, choose low-impact activities like swimming or cycling to stay fit. Or you could take a short walk to get some exercise.
Make sure your feet get enough rest after any physical activity. Also, don’t hesitate to ditch your exercise routine on days when the pain becomes intolerable.
4. Exercise Your Feet
The right exercise routine can help strengthen the muscles in your feet and raise the arch. Simple activities, such as rolling a tennis or golf ball under your feet, can help improve the arch. That, in turn, increases stability and balance.
Additionally, you could practice stretching exercises that strengthen the muscles in your feet and support the arch. You could also consider walking barefoot to make the muscles more active and flexible.
Flat feet can turn into a painful condition that disrupts your life. You might struggle with routine activities, such as walking or climbing the stairs. But instead of taking over-the-counter painkillers, it’s wiser to look for other ways to alleviate your pain.
Use custom-made insoles to raise and support the arch and minimize pain. Also, manage your body weight and engage in regular exercise to strengthen the muscles in your feet.