Children start walking between the ages of 9-15 months with girls being a little bit faster than boys. It is common to see children walking with the feet turned in or out. Out-toeing is a less of a concern because children usually grow out of this condition.
In Toeing in Children
In-toeing also know as pigeon-toed, can be a problem if left untreated. If the condition does not correct itself, children can develop numerous problems as they become young adults. These include bunions, hammertoes, heel pain and/or ankle, knee or lower back problems.
This is because as the foot turns in, the heel turns outward. This is called over-pronation. Most foot deformities occur because of abnormal gait disturbances. In addition, the leg is rotated internally, which is the reason for knee and lower back pain.
Treatment for In-Toeing
Most doctors will tell parents that their child will outgrow this problem. As a Hillsborough podiatrist, we see many patients per day who have problems secondary to uncorrected in-toeing. So, it is best to treat and prevent problems instead of waiting for the problem to correct itself. Treatment is very simple which is making a pair of custom orthotics. Depending on the age of the child, an orthotic can decrease the amount of in-toeing. Once the child reaches the age of seven, it is difficult to eliminate the in-toeing but an orthotic will help prevent foot problems that are associated with this deformity.