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Pt 2 of our Flat Feet review examines the various treatment options available

Posted by Eamonn Brady on


Flat Feet (Part 2)




No treatment is required if flat feet do not cause problems. Well-fitted shoes, especially extra-broad fitting types of shoes can help. For people suffering from over-pronated feet, a special insole, which prevents feet rolling over too much, can ease the problems. These specialised insoles can be advised on by a chiropodist or a physiotherapist who are specialists in assessing for and measuring the specialist insoles. These insoles are also called orthotics. If pain occurs, rest, ice, and over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, or NSAIDS (e.g., Ibuprofen) can give relief; however, painkillers should only be a temporary solution; the cause of the problem should be identified and corrected.

Children with an abnormal foot that has not developed properly may require an operation to straighten the foot or to separate bones that have fused. Operations are rarely needed as these are rare causes of flat feet in children. Most children with flat feet have a mobile form of flat feet which generally does not need treatment, or if treatment is needed due to pain or excessive wear of shoes, an insole is often sufficient to rectify the problem.

Flat feet that develop due to a disorder of the nervous system may require specialised insoles, shoes, or braces to support feet or legs.  In some of these cases, an operation will be required to straighten the feet. Flat feet due to ruptured tendons or arthritis may need to be treated with painkillers and an insole initially. Again, an operation may be required to straighten the foot in these cases.


Other actions that can help include wearing footwear with lower heels and wide toes, losing weight if appropriate and doing appropriate exercises that strengthen muscles in the feet which can include walking barefoot, exercises called toe curls (flexing the toes) and heel raises (standing on tiptoes).



A chiropodist assesses diagnoses and treats diseases and abnormalities of the feet and lower limbs. A chiropodist can significantly improve a person’s quality of life by alleviating painful symptoms and promoting and maintaining mobility. Whelehans pharmacy has a chiropodist, James Pedley. You can make an appointment online on the Whelehans Website or in store or by phoning us at 04493 34591.


To be continued…next week


For comprehensive and free health advice and information call in to Whelehans, log on to or dial 04493 34591 (Pearse St) or 04493 10266 (Clonmore). Email queries to Find us on Facebook.

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