"Toeing the Line"

Many children and adults have one foot which turns inward more than the other or, in some cases, both feet point inward in what is commonly known as "pigeon toes." Toeing-in can be mild and barely noticeable or it can be so severe as to make walking awkward and difficult.

One common cause of one or both feet turning inward is a lack of normal movement in the sacroiliac joints. These are the joints at the bottom of the spine, where the "dimples" in the back are.

One or both joints may be "locked" causing abnormal movement of the whole pelvis while walking. Often the problem becomes evident soon after the child begins walking. In many cases, parents are told the child will grow out of it. What often occurs is that the imbalance leads to a compensating imbalance in the pelvis or lower back. This can cause low back pain, hip or knee problems. In other cases, the child may not grow out of it and it may persist into adulthood.

If the parent observes the child walking, it will often be apparent that the lower back and pelvis are moving from side to side in an exaggerated way or the child may seem to hold his or her back in such a way that the behind "sticks out" more than normal.

The reasons for sacroiliac joint fixations are not always known with certainty, but position in the womb, difficulty with delivery or falling on the side or bottom can be contributing factors.

The imbalances which cause feet to turn in can usually be treated successfully by adjustments to restore proper sacroiliac function. Not only can this result in a cosmetic change, but it will have invaluable future benefits in preventing wear and tear on the spine, hips and knees. Contact our office for more information!

Dr. Karin Mattern

6543 Portsmouth Rd.

Nanaimo, BC

V9T 1C4

250-933-3443

drkarin@shaw.ca

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