Flat Feet Treatment in Camarillo and Santa Barbara, CA

Flat feet can cause numerous issues for those experiencing the condition. From problems with your gait to pain when you exercise, fallen arches can lead to further issues such as back and knee pain due to structural abnormalities in the feet. If you require a diagnosis and treatment for flat feet or other foot- or ankle-related issues, visit Align Foot & Ankle Center to find out how we can help residents of the Camarillo and Santa Barbara area.
Photo of a flat feet condition

Defining Flat Feet

Also known as pes planus or fallen arches, flat feet describe a deformity in which the arch of the foot collapses or simply isn’t present. This causes the entirety of the sole to touch the ground with every step, which in turn may cause foot pain with even moderate amounts of activity. Those with this condition may have either congenital flat feet from birth or acquire fallen arches later in life as a result of injuries, obesity, or simply wear and tear on the feet.
Defining Flat Feet

Diagnosing Flat Feet

If you suspect you have flat feet, you need a diagnosis of pes planus from a doctor to be sure before you begin treatment. Most podiatrists ask that you wear everyday shoes that see lots of wear to your appointment and then typically wish to examine the stresses your feet experience during wear. While most fallen arches examinations rely on visual inspections, imaging tests such as X-rays, MRIs, ultrasound, and CT scans may play into a flat feet diagnosis.
Flat foot x-ray image

Treating Flat Feet

Many avenues for treating flat feet exist and good podiatrists go over your options with you to help you reach positive outcomes. If you experience no pain, then you may not even require treatment at the moment, just vigilance going forward so you can address any issues with your doctor as they arise. But if you’re experiencing pain, your doctor or podiatrist may recommend one or more of the treatment options mentioned below.
Diagnosing Flat Feet

Orthotic Devices

Orthotic devices such as arch supports are one of the simplest ways of dealing with flat feet. These treatment options help correct issues with your gait or structural problems with your feet themselves so you have extra support when you walk. Keep in mind that ready-made orthotic devices may be convenient, but they rarely help. If you have flat feet, you most likely need custom orthotics or shoe inserts designed specifically to support your unique feet.

Supportive Shoes

Supportive shoes are another noninvasive way of addressing foot problems caused by fallen arches. Most off-the-rack shoes have designs suitable for people with normal feet, though some feature built-in arch support insoles that provide stability for your steps. In some cases, your podiatrist may even recommend specially made shoes to work with other facets of your flat feet treatment plan and hopefully help reduce foot pain.

Exercise Techniques

Exercise techniques such as stretching used in physical therapy may help some with flat feet find relief with nonsurgical treatment. Physical therapists often use simple foot stretching exercises to handle overpronation, including short foot stretches, calf stretches, heel raises, and toe yoga. Each of these techniques helps your feet bounce back from overuse while providing additional benefits for the lower legs and lower back, which can help alleviate knee pain and back pain.

Treating with Painkillers

Over-the-counter painkillers can help with foot pain caused by flat feet. Even if you have flexible flat feet, the condition may lead to issues with damaged ligaments or soft tissues, strained Achilles tendons, rheumatoid arthritis, and plantar fasciitis. Doctors and podiatrists typically recommend nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory painkillers such as ibuprofen and naproxen if you need some help dealing with flat foot pain.

Corrective Surgery

Corrective surgery is the last resort in dealing with flat foot problems. Most doctors and podiatrists typically avoid corrective foot surgery as long as possible, hoping less invasive measures will help alleviate the symptoms of flat feet so that extraordinary reconstructive surgery isn’t required.

If you need treatment for flat feet or other foot or ankle issues in Camarillo or Santa Barbara, CA, Align Foot & Ankle Center can help with treatment options that work best for you and your lifestyle. Make an appointment today to learn more about how we can help.

Book An Appointment Online Today!

Align Foot & Ankle is dedicated to getting you moving again.

"I've always believed in exhausting conservative treatment over surgery. Over the years in practice, I've kept many people out of the operating room. Even then, the patients who have been taken to surgery are extremely pleased with their results. I will do all I can to get you moving again...without pain or discomfort!"

Dr. Hai-En Peng