SUMMARY: Think that flat feet won’t ever lead to bigger problems? This condition can cause excruciating knee pain, especially if you gain weight. Find out how walking with your flat feet can lead to disabling knee pain.
Do you love to walk to stay fit and be ready for whatever life throws at you? Perhaps you are pregnant and you want to be prepared for childbirth? Normally, walking an hour each day would not harm your body. However, the unthinkable can still happen – severe knee pain that makes it almost impossible to stand or walk.
So what causes this disabling kind of knee pain? Flat feet. Yes, this condition is no joke. Like most people, you might have believed all this time that there’s nothing wrong with having flat feet. What you don’t know is that the condition can lead to serious knee damage if you gain weight.
If you’ve had a slim figure all your life and now you’ve gained weight because of pregnancy or your lifestyle, you have to pay extra attention to your flat feet.
What happens if you don’t lose the extra weight
After giving birth, some women find it difficult to shed off their extra weight, prompting them to head to the gym. And this is when the severe knee pain may be felt — when you do something different. Pain inside the knees may be felt as soon as you run or stretch. The pain may worsen over the years, up to the point that walking is no longer possible.
So why blame my flat feet?
Even if your flat feet has not affected the way you walk all your life and you have family and friends who have flat feet but are perfectly fine, it doesn’t mean that your condition won’t put your health at risk.
A woman in the UK experienced excruciating knee pain while working out in the gym, and this happened after she gave birth. And guess what? She has flat feet and spent hours walking while she was pregnant.
During an MRI scan, it was seen that there were tears in her meniscus. These are the tiny pads of cartilage found within the knees that function as shock absorbers.
Flat feet may not affect you at all, until you gain weight. When you gain weight, like in pregnancy, the wrong part of the foot carries the weight. This sets up an upward chain reaction.
What’s worse is the pain can also be felt in the ankles, hip, and lower back. A lot people with flat feet have pain in different parts of their bodies, but because they don’t have foot pain, they never realize that the root cause is their flat feet.
How do I deal with this type of knee pain?
Although there is no quick way to treat this knee pain, you can certainly avoid it. One way to avoid the pain is to change the way you walk. It also helps to perform exercises that strengthen muscles and to stay active without putting too much strain on the knees.
If you are overweight, the first thing you need to do is to lose weight. Then again, you have to keep in mind that prevention is still better than cure. So if you are pregnant or have gained weight, choose your footwear wisely. Athletic shoes are best if you want to walk 30 minutes or so; ditch the flip-flops!
You can also make use of arch support insoles or custom-made orthotics. These are placed in the shoe to provide support or correct the foot’s position with every step.
If this kind of knee pain is ignored, surgery may be needed. The individual will also be at greater risk of having osteoarthritis.
Doing what you think is right – that is, walking to stay fit – may not be as easy as it should be if you have flat feet. Maybe all you need is a change of footwear to prevent this knee pain from happening. Since having flat feet means there is little to no arch support, you should make use of the right products and orthotics that will act as shock absorbers.