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5 Signs Your Child Should See a Foot Specialist

5 Signs Your Child Should See a Foot Specialist

Most of the patients who visit a doctor's office to speak with a foot specialist are adults. This is because foot problems become more common and prominent as people age. However, podiatrists also treat children and encourage parents to recognize the signs that their child should visit a foot doctor.

Signs of potential foot issues

Here are a few signs to be mindful of when it comes to your children's feet:

1. Complaining of foot pain

Many parents associate foot pain with growing pains or something that may go away on its own. In some cases, this is correct. However, it is not worth taking a chance that the source of the pain is something more serious. For example, it is possible for a child to develop a heel spur. While less common in youth, it is best to rule this possibility out so that if there is an actual problem, he or she can receive treatment and recover.

2. Ingrown toenails

One of the more common foot ailments that children suffer from is ingrown toenails. This is where the toenail begins to grow downward into the skin on one or both sides. It can be incredibly painful and even lead to infections, swelling and pus coming out of the toes. Very often, children suffer from this condition because they wear shoes that are too tight when walking around or playing sports.

Children do not always complain of these things, so it is important to check their feet frequently to make sure they are not squeezing their feet into shoes that are too small. Regardless of what causes an ingrown toenail, a specialist can treat the problem in during an office visit. It is important to bring your child in so that the doctor can do so as quickly as possible before an infection sets in.

3. Stabbing pain

Any time a child complains of stabbing pain, it is important to get them to a doctor immediately.

4. Numbness

If a child complains of numbness in the feet or ankle, he or she needs to see a doctor right away.

5. Injury

If a child suffers an injury to a foot in an accident while playing sports, it is wise to visit a foot specialist instead of a pediatrician. The pediatrician is an important doctor and a child needs to see that person at least once per year. These types of doctors have a lot of knowledge and information about a wide variety of things. However, a pediatrician does not have the depth of information necessary to treat foot problems like a podiatrist can. Because these doctors focus on foot health every day, they are the right medical provider to visit if a child has some form of foot injury.

A specialist offers multiple treatment options

Another benefit to visiting a podiatrist's office is that he or she has multiple ways to treat common foot and ankle problems. He or she may recommend physical therapy, which can be helpful in resolving many foot problems. Whenever possible, these doctors will recommend these noninvasive or minimally invasive solutions to start. However, if surgery is necessary, these doctors are also skilled foot surgeons and can complete that procedure. This makes it possible to go from step one through completion while remaining under one single care provider.

Schedule an appointment for your child with a foot specialist

If you are a parent whose child is suffering from a foot problem, schedule an appointment with your podiatrist's office today. They will be happy to examine your child, determine what the nature of the problem is and make treatment recommendations. Feel secure in the knowledge that these specialists have your child's best interest at heart and will always look to start with a minimally invasive treatment when possible.

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