Flat feet (or medically Pes Planus) are very common, and in fact tend to be one of the most prevalent foot types in the world. While there are a number of people who are asymptomatic, some do experience some pain and discomfort. Problems usually arise when standing or walking on your feet for a long time, and the issue is usually accentuated when standing on hard floors. Poor shoe gear also plays a role, and most likely you may experience more pain in flats or shoes with poor overall support. The reason why flat feet are so uncomfortable is because the overall foot/ankle alignment is thrown off, and causes you to place more pressure on the inside (medial aspect) of your feet. In turn, the ankle is often in a pronated (turned inward) position as well. Flat feet lead to extra strain/pull on tendons and ligaments, especially those on the inside of the feet. You may also experience premature arthritis due to the poor alignment of the joints. In many instances, you may notice that you have a bunion developing and/or you experience frequent heel/arch pain. All these associated issues, along with the general discomfort are likely to worsen over time without treatment.
Our approach is largely conservative, at least initially. Typically, we recommend some type of orthotic or arch support (feel free to browse some of our options in our store) paired with a more supportive athletic shoe. Depending on your needs, we may also try injections, padding/accomodations, orthotic modifications, or ultrasound therapy, to name a few. In some instances, surgical intervention may be recommended, though that will be determined on a case by case basis.
For more information, please feel free to get in touch with us.