The most common orthopedic problems in infants and young children are related to difficulty walking or deformation of the foot or leg shape. These problems usually resolve over time.
Some of the most common orthopedic problems in infants and young children correct themselves as they grow older. However, the problem may not go away or may progress to serious illness. If you have children, you should pay attention to the orthopedic problems that are common at this time.
But that doesn’t mean you need to worry or panic. Many conditions look like serious problems, but in reality, they are not.
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It is best to consult a doctor who can recommend the steps to be followed. Don’t forget to be patient and wait for the problem to be resolved. Let’s take a look at the most common orthopedic problems in infants and young children.
Many orthopedic modifications tend to occur in newborns or when the child is still young. But some of them are very common problems.
Five things that stand out in particular are:
1) Flat Feet
Flat feet are one of the most common orthopedic problems in children. In fact, almost all babies are born with flat feet, but they develop curvature as they grow older. However, a condition in which such curvature does not occur completely is called flatfoot.
In fact, flat feet are not a big problem. There is no scientific evidence that flat feet impair children’s normal walking or motor skills. Doctors recommend using special insoles only in cases where pain occurs.
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2) Putting your weight on your toes
This refers to the behavior of children walking with their feet up. They are often seen when they are about to walk between 1 and 3 years of age, but usually, no longer walk with their feet up by the age of 2 years. However, some children may continue to put their weight on their toes beyond this period.
If you do this occasionally, it’s not a problem, but if you walk like this on a regular basis, you should consult a pediatrician. In this case, there may be a neurological problem, such as cerebral palsy. If there are no further problems, treatment should be sought for a normal gait.
It is important to note that varus foot occurs when the baby begins to stand with the foot curled inward. It occurs between 8 and 15 months of age, but if the problem does not go away after that, it is considered a disease.
In general, varus is caused by an anterior tilt of the femur, which rotates the hip inward. In most cases, valgus does not affect the child’s normal movements and activities and usually returns to normal over time.
4) Bent legs, a common orthopedic problem in infants and young children
Another orthopedic problem that often occurs in children is bent legs, also known as ‘puddles’. In this case, there is excessive curvature outward and downward at the knee.
Most bent legs resolve spontaneously. However, if the problem doesn’t go away after age 2 or only affects one leg, you may have a more serious problem, such as rickets or Blunt’s disease.
Rickets is a bone growth problem, caused by a vitamin D deficiency. Blunt’s disease, on the other hand, is a tibial disorder that causes abnormal bone growth. These problems require professional orthopedic treatment. A bent leg can also be inherited.
5) X-shaped leg, a common orthopedic problem in infants and toddlers
An X-legged or valgus knee appears to a moderate degree in almost all children. It can be detected between 3 and 6 years of age when the natural alignment of the legs occurs.
Treatment is seldom needed, as it is common for the legs to straighten on their own over time. If the X-shape looks too prominent or does not go away after age 6, you should see your doctor.
A pediatrician checks for orthopedic problems with a physical examination.
A physical examination by a pediatrician is needed to diagnose orthopedic problems that are common in infants and young children. X-ray, CT, ultrasound, electromyography, and MRI examinations are only necessary for special circumstances.
Doctors look at the problematic leg and sometimes instruct the child to walk. If you have flat feet, you may be asked to lift your brackets. This is to observe the natural gait of a child with a crooked foot.
In addition, the varus foot can be diagnosed by observing the shape and position of the foot. In the case of varus, gait and stride length are examined, and sometimes imaging tests are performed. In particular, imaging tests are the main method for diagnosing an X-shaped leg.
Consultation with a pediatrician is the best option.
Common orthopedic problems include nasolabial gait, vertical talus, or foot position problems.
Therefore, it is important to observe the development of the child’s gait. If in doubt, it is best to evaluate the situation in consultation with a pediatrician. As with any other problem, early detection and treatment can be very important.