Orthopedics and traumatology

The danger to a child's health of inheriting shoes from his brother


Although we think it is a good idea inherit shoes from siblings, cousins, or friends Because they are not very used, we should not make children reuse footwear as it could be harmful to their health. Know the risks and dangers of doing it!

Each person adapts the shoe to their foot and their way of walking. If you look at a used shoe, you can see internally the marks of the toe print and sometimes even the heel. On the outside, we can find wear of the skin in the toe area, although the most striking thing is the sole. You can see how the drawing disappears in different areas where there is more friction.

Perhaps that wear is symmetrical on both feet, or perhaps it is more pronounced on one of the two. If this is the case and another child uses that shoe, he may develop a false short leg, with its corresponding adaptations, a knee, hip, lumbar, back, neck problem, and even a bad bite or vision problems.

Another thing that stands out is the heel sole seen from behind. There we can see if there is more wear on the inner edge, causing a valgus of the calcaneus (heel bone) or the outer edge, generating a calcaneal varus. This misalignment of the heel will also influence the rest of the lower limb, generating torsions that the spine must compensate, to maintain the horizontality of the gaze.

In these early ages walk with a used shoe It can cause chafing, deformities in the toes, affect the growth of the foot and the rest of the structures in formation, cause poor support to appear and produce adaptive torsion in the legs and even compensation in the back, neck or jaw.

We should ask ourselves when and in what cases to start putting babies on. Perhaps we tend to do it early, driven by the inertia of fashion, since there are more and more adult shoes in a 'mini' version, and it is very funny to see the little ones with those striking shoes but, do you really needed? Are they the footwear they need?

Forcing an unprepared baby to stand or walk is not advisable. Each child has his own rhythm, and wanting to overtake us because the neighbor's son already does, could cause twisting of the bones of his legs in formation.

Shoes on babies should only be used to protect them from the cold or dangerous surfaces. Needless to say, a baby who does not walk does not need any footwear, indeed, it would be counterproductive for them to spend a long time with them, since they deprive them of a great sensory experience that is essential for their development.

According to a study by Isabel Gentil, professor at the University School of Nursing, Physiotherapy and Podiatry, at the Complutense University of Madrid, "walking barefoot is a stimulus that accelerates maturation and intellectual development."

If possible, it is important that when your child begins to crawl and walk, they do so barefoot. If this were not the case, we should look for a very flexible shoe, which we can easily bend with one hand, so that the many joints of the foot can move without restriction.

The shoes must be soft, light, made of breathable materials, with non-slip soles, but not too thick and wide enough so that they do not compress the toes. They must have laces or velcro. It is not suitable for young children to wear moccasin-type shoes, flats, flip-flops or clogs ...

As the child grows older, they should be instructed not to wear sport-specific footwear all day. It is common to see boys in soccer shoes from early morning until late afternoon. This shoe is not very flexible, it has a narrow toe box, it could cause roughness, and in the long run, deformations in the foot.

It would also not be advisable to wear shoes with wheels or with a lot of cushioning. The cushioning function should be done by the foot. If we get used to a lot of cushioning, we will weaken the muscles and shorten the calf. In the long run, we will favor the appearance of fasciitis, tendinitis ...

Nor should we buy ankle boots as first shoes. Although we think that they are better for the little ones because they 'hold them well', they limit the mobility of the ankle, and they modify the gait. They would be learning to walk with the wrong movement pattern. The stiffer the shoe and its soles, the poorer the muscle activation will be, and the more weakness will occur in the intrinsic muscles of the foot, which may favor pathologies such as flat feet.

The contact of the bare foot on the ground and different surfaces (grass, sand ...) increases the baby's proprioception (ability to be aware of our joints in space) and the sensitivity of the skin receptors. It improves the stimulus that helps the foot and leg muscles to be activated correctly, and that little by little the plantar arch is formed. It also increases your coordination and balance. Do you need more reasons for your little one to walk around the house barefoot?

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