Indian Land has some great parks for families with small children to enjoy. The Steele Street Park is one of those, where your children can run, jump, and play on swings, slides, and jungle gyms. An afternoon at the park is a great way to help your son or daughter burn lots of energy while exercising and having fun. Watching your child run and play is a good way to observe his or her walking and check for things like gait abnormalities, too.

Gait abnormalities are any sort of unusual way of walking. Many parents find these differences disconcerting. No one likes to worry that their son or daughter may have trouble walking later in life! The good news is that most walking problems in babies and small children are relatively common. It actually takes several years for your child to master walking mechanics and develop an adult-like gait pattern.

There are a few issues kids tend to develop:

  • Intoeing/out-toeing – These conditions make the toes look like they are pointed in or pointed out when your child stands or walks. The issues are usually the result of the position of the feet in the womb. In most cases, they don’t cause any trouble walking and your son or daughter will outgrow them in a few years. Occasionally, though, this is connected to a neuromuscular disorder, so have your child’s feet checked.
  • Toe walking – Sometimes children learn to walk on their toes. This is a fairly common for young walkers. Most children outgrow this after a few years. Occasionally it signals Achilles tendon issues, though, so evaluating it is important.
  • Limping – Most children limp when their feet are uncomfortable. This is usually the sign of an injury, though not necessarily a serious one. Have your child checked for limb injuries to deal with the problem.

Each of these abnormalities could be something simple and normal, or a sign of a bigger problem. The key is not to panic when you notice your child walking funny. Instead, let our experts at Carolina Podiatry Group investigate the problem and determine its seriousness. Then you can either let your child outgrow the condition or take action to deal with it, depending on your child’s needs. Call to make an appointment today: (803) 548-FEET for our Indian Land office or (803) 285-1411 for our office in Lancaster.

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