The news is filled with stories about the growing numbers of overweight children. Kids aren’t eating right, and they’re not getting enough exercise.
But overweight kids may have a problem getting the exercise they need if their feet hurt. Painful feet keep them from getting out there and running around with the other kids. And if they don’t participate in physical activities, they just gain more weight.
It’s a vicious cycle. Children who have inherited foot problems, such as bunions or flat feet, find it difficult to exercise. They become overweight, and then that excess weight causes even more foot problems, such as inflammation of the growth plate in the heel or stress fractures.
We’re seeing more and more overweight children in our office. Our goal in treating them is to relieve their foot pain so that they can become more physically active. Once they’re more active, they can start losing those excess pounds, and there’s less stress on their growing bones and muscles.
If your children are overweight, keep an eye on their feet. If it looks like they’re having trouble walking or running, make an appointment to have their feet checked out.
Once a child’s feet are feeling good, a whole new active and healthy lifestyle opens up!