Because the feet of young children are soft and pliable, unusual body forces can cause abnormality. Therefore, a newborn baby’s feet can be quite vulnerable. Did you know the foot has 26 bones, and an intricate structure of ligaments, muscles, blood vessels, and nerves? Because children’s feet grow swiftly during the first year, podiatrists consider this period to be the most critical stage of the foot’s development.
To help ensure normal development the American Medical Podiatric Association offers easy, common sense steps for parents. First, look carefully at your baby’s feet for changes that do not look normal. Understand that many deformities will not correct themselves if left untreated therefore contacting podiatric physician promptly is a wise decision.
Newborn feet should be unrestricted with an opportunity for exercising. Shoes or booties are not necessary for infants as they can restrict movement and can inhibit toes and feet from normal development. Babies exercise by kicking so uncover the baby and change their position several times a day. By doing so allows for easy movement as well as prepares the feet and legs for weight bearing. Lying too long in one position may put excessive strain on the feet and legs. Also, limit the amount of time your baby spends standing in an activity center to no more than 15 minutes.
Start-rite shoes understand the development of cute baby feet is critical. They believe that properly fitted shoes are vital to healthy feet. They recommend children have a professional fit check every six to eight weeks for toddlers. Beyond toddler age, conduct a professional fit check every three to four months.
Specially developed tools to assist parents in measuring for a proper fit when visiting one of their retailer stores is not an option are available online. Three methods of home fitting childrens shoes are offered: Click n fit by means of digital photographs and online analysis, purchasing a small or large foot gauge, or by downloading a paper gauge.
Start-rite offers numerous measuring and fitting videos like the one posted here to educate and assist new parents.
The information provided at Start Rite Shoes is in line with AMPA recommendations and well worth a visit for new parents who desire to learn more about baby shoes.