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Q&A:
My toddler has flat feet -- are her arches still developing?

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Question


I'm concerned about flat feet. My 27-month-old has a visible arch when she sits, but when she stands her foot is flat. Are her arches still developing? Should I be concerned? I read that a toddler loses her fat pad once she begins to walk.

Answer


You're describing perfectly normal feet for a 2-year-old! Almost all babies are born with "flat feet" or very little arch, and this persists well through the preschool years. The bones and joints of toddlers are still very flexible, so what little arch you may see while they are sitting disappears when they bear weight and stand up. Young toddlers also have a fat pad on the inner border of their feet, which hides any arch. Be assured that your baby's arches are still developing now, and they will continue to stiffen until about kindergarten. However, about 20 percent of babies stay flat-footed into adult life, and nothing can really be done to alter the course of the flat-footed adult. Corrective shoes and orthotic inserts will only cause discomfort for children and do no good. Your health care provider will want to check all of your daughter's joints for mobility on her next well-child checkup. As long as she has full mobility about the ankle and foot, her flat feet are normal.  
 
 
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