3 Common Orthopedic Problems in Children You Must Know
Children are an amazing life experience for all adults. Watching them grow is one of the most satisfying and fulfilling experiences for any parent. However, along with the joys also come some troubles occasionally. Many times, parents notice that their child is developing a few problems along the growth curve. Some of these may be very trivial conditions while some may turn out to be severe. However, for the most part, many orthopedic conditions are just normal variations in the human skeletal structure and do not necessarily need treatment. Some may need to be investigated more closely.
Here are a few common orthopedic problems seen in children:
Toe Walking: When toddlers learn to walk, they start out in various ways. What starts out as practice, with the help of some support or a parent holding hands, gradually develops into them learning the nuances of how to walk. Along the way, it is common for them to walk on their toes because they are still trying to grasp the concept. However, the tendency usually goes away by the age of 3. If the child is persistently walking on the toes, especially slightly older children, it might be linked to other conditions such as cerebral palsy, muscle weakness, autism or some issue related to the nervous system. If all else is fine and the child is still toe walking, then usage of casts for the foot and ankle could help stretch the calf muscles. A physical therapist and a qualified orthopedic doctor can advise on the same.
Flatfeet: Most babies are born with flatfeet and the arches are usually formed only as they grow. In some children though, the arch is never fully developed. It is common for parents of children with flatfeet to have some concern regarding the condition. However, flatfeet are not a cause of worry unless and until they become painful while performing everyday activities. Otherwise, children with flatfeet are at no disadvantage due to their condition. Some medical props are also used at the discretion of a qualified medical professional to help stimulate the growth of the arch in the foot.
Pigeon Toes: Also known as in-toeing, this condition occurs when the child’s feet turn inward. As babies, this is very common for the legs to be turned in up to 15 months of age, but after they begin standing, it should be naturally reduced. Children who in-toe and, as a result, trip may have internal tibial torsion. This means that the lower leg is rotated inward. Some children may have femoral anteversion, in which there is a larger than usual bend in the upper leg that causes it to rotate inward. Cerebral palsy is also a possible cause for in-toeing. This is a very rare condition and usually does not require treatment. Even if childhood does not take care of it, teenage brings better muscle control and coordination, thus helping in the legs’ improvement.
There are other conditions such as Bowlegs and Knock-Knees which are quite rare and come with treatments should they be detected. All problems that stem out of nutritional deficiency can be controlled by ensuring proper care while a mother is expecting the baby. There are a few conditions which can be inherited but, overall, orthopedic problems in children are thankfully not as common today as they were a few years ago. If you require any orthopedic consultation regarding your children, please click here.