Toddler’s Pigeon Toed: Causes & Treatment Options

As a child develops and starts to walk you may notice what some call pigeon toed waking or intoeing. These two words are used to describe the inward turn of your child’s foot when they are walking along or maybe even your own foot issues you might deal with. As a toddler is growing their body is constantly changing and these problems you notice now may not be an issue in a few months or years to come. How can you know if the intoeing problem you’re seeing with your child is a problem that needs further attention? Here is a look at the causes of pigeon toed walking and what you can do about it if your child needs further observation.

Causes of Intoeing And Varying Treatment Options

There are three main causes of pigeon toed walking. One is when the metatarsus adductus in the foot has a curve inward instead of being straight as it should be. In most cases this is a flexible tendon and can be easily fixed wearing braces or doing stretches to straighten it back out. In extreme cases surgery may be needed.

The intoeing can also be caused due to a twisting of the tibia bone. This will come from the knee area and it causes the shin to be twisted as well, thus making your child walk pigeon toed. This type of intoeing is most commonly seen in children and toddlers as they are beginning to learn to walk. On most scenarios, this fixes itself as your child grows and begins walking more and more. Once the leg bone has stopped growing, if your child is still walking in this manner then surgery may be necessary to fix the twisting of the bone.

Between the ages of 2 and 4 years old the child may start to show intoeing that is coming from a problem in the hip area. The femoral anteversion can have a twist in the upper thigh area causing the walking problems. Once this problem has shown up they typically will grow out of it by the time they are nearing 8 years of age. If not, then a doctor should be consulted to see if there are underlying issues that need to be addressed further.

If your child starts showing signs of this as they are beginning to walk, then in most cases you can let them continue to grow and walk. They will most likely straighten their feet and legs as they learn to walk more. However, if this shows up after the age of three or doesn’t seem to be getting better, it’s time to consult your doctor. They can do an examination to see what needs to be done and what course of treatment to follow.

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