Pediatric Care Specialist

Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine

Podiatry & Sports Medicine Physicians located in Kirkland, WA

Parents in search of help for their children suffering from pediatric foot and ankle issues will find uniquely experienced podiatrists at Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine in Kirkland, Washington. Starting with the philosophy of the practice to seek nonsurgical solutions first, Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine podiatrists understand children’s foot and ankle issues and the delicate nature of working with children. Call or contact Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine online today for a kid-friendly visit.

Pediatric Care Q & A

Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine

What should I look for in kids’ shoes?

There are certain basic guidelines for finding healthy footwear for children. Keep the following in mind when trying to find the best shoes for your kids:

  • Children should not wear backless or slip-on footwear. Make sure shoes are always secured firmly with velcro, laces, or other fasteners.
  • Find shoes made from breathable materials.
  • High heels and other unstable footwear are never a good idea for a child.
  • Pick out shoes with soles that have traction to prevent falling on slippery surfaces, especially winter boots.
  • Footwear should be flexible enough to bend with the foot, yet sturdy enough to offer protection.

Do kids get ingrown toenails?

Infants and younger children can get ingrown toenails, but they’re more commonly found among teenagers. Cutting nails incorrectly, picking at them, or neglect can all cause infection. Trauma and the use of cleats for sports can also cause the nail to bend inward, making it more likely that its edge will grow into the skin. If the nail grows inward and there’s an infection, it’s possible the problem can be resolved by debriding the nail, taking oral antibiotics, and soaking the toes in warm water with Epsom salts or diluted betadine. In more severe cases with redness and swelling or the nail actually penetrating the skin, talk to a specialist at Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine to see if a nail procedure is necessary.

How do kids get plantar warts?

Kids get plantar warts from walking barefoot where these microscopic viruses enter the body through a break in the skin on the bottom (plantar) side of your foot. The virus is found in warm, moist environments, such as around a swimming pool, on the beach, in a locker room, or even inside your shoes when your feet perspire.

Plantar warts often spread to other areas of the foot, increase in size, and appear in clusters. Plantar warts can erupt anywhere on the sole of the foot. They may be difficult to distinguish from calluses. The difference is you may see tiny black dots on the surface layer of a plantar wart. These are the ends of capillary blood vessels. Calluses have no blood vessels and usually resemble yellow candle wax.

How do you treat plantar warts?

Plantar warts are harder to treat than warts on other parts of the body. They’re uncomfortable and can grow up into the skin, making it feel like a pebble is inside your shoe. Treatment can be as direct as a physician carefully trimming the wart and applying a chemically treated dressing.

You may also get instructions for self-care. Salicylic acid patches, applied on a daily basis, and good foot hygiene, including regular use of a pumice stone, may be all that’s needed. A podiatrist at Run Doctor can tell you the most effective treatment for your plantar warts.

What should I do if my child gets athlete’s foot?

The most common skin problem in children is athlete’s foot. Boys will often wear their shoes all day, and if they exercise, they may walk around with wet socks, which only makes the problem worse. On top of that, kids often don’t tell their parents about the problem.

Changing to a different pair of shoes and using an antifungal powder or spray daily is the first step in treating athlete’s foot. Daily use of an antifungal cream like 2% naftifine hydrochloride, particularly between the toes, is a good start. For more severe cases, it’s generally a good idea to consult a podiatrist at Run Doctor who can advise on proper medication and hygiene.

How can you treat crossover toes?

The most common childhood toe problem is “curly” toes. It’s an inherited trait usually seen in the third or fourth toes. Crossover toes are caused by damage to the ligaments that support the toes, leading to muscle damage and the inability of the affected toes to remain straight. The cause is usually poor footwear, especially high heels.

You can usually treat this condition prior to age 12 with pads and/or daily taping. If the condition persists after a year of nonaggressive treatment, talk to a Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine podiatrist who can repair the crossover toe, applying the same technique used with adult patients as long as the bones have reached skeletal maturity, around ages 14-16.

Talk to the experts at Washington Foot & Ankle Sports Medicine in Kirkland, Washington to guide your family through any of these issues with your kids’ feet and ankles. You’ll find podiatrists who not only understand podiatry, but also understand the active lives of kids today.