Do You Have Fallen Arches? What Your Podiatrist Wants You To Know

The arch of your foot plays a key role in the support and comfort of your feet. Unfortunately, what many people don't realize is that your foot arches aren't invincible. In fact, there are some cases where you may find that an otherwise normal arch in your foot will fall, leaving you with flat feet. Here's a look at some of the things that you should understand about fallen arches and your feet.

What Exactly Is A Fallen Arch?

A fallen arch is an arch in your foot that is no longer curved upward. Instead, that arch on the inside of your foot becomes flat, creating an entirely flat foot that comes fully into contact with the ground when you walk. Flat feet can be uncomfortable because that shift in your foot's shape can cause strain on the leg muscles, heels, and the rest of your feet.

What Causes A Fallen Arch?

Even if your feet have always had a strong traditional arch, that doesn't mean that you're immune to the risk of fallen arches. In fact, you should understand what can increase your risk of this condition. Obesity, arthritis, tendon problems, and certain injuries can put you at risk of fallen arches. The condition is also hereditary in some situations, so having a parent with flat feet may put you at greater risk of the condition as well.

What Can You Do About Fallen Arches?

One thing that everyone should understand is that you're not necessarily stuck with fallen arches. In fact, if you are struggling with flat feet, a podiatrist can offer you all sorts of solutions. There are many stretches and physical exercises that can help preserve your arch. In addition, wearing shoes with solid arch support can make a difference, too. Icing and wrapping your feet when your arches give you pain might make a difference as well. 

There are also surgical interventions to address fallen arches. Your podiatrist will evaluate the condition of your foot and the arch to determine if you need surgery to correct the problem. In most situations, surgery is a last resort and only pursued when other means of intervention don't resolve the condition.

If you're struggling with the symptoms of flat feet, talk with a podiatrist. He or she will inspect your arches to determine what's caused them to fall and then provide you with recommended treatments to help you resolve the condition.