Soon school will be over and children in Cape May County will be enjoying lazy days and summer activities. At Paul S. DeMarco, DPM, we know, unfortunately, that means we will be seeing more of certain foot disorders in our young patients.
Below are three of the more common foot issues summer brings for children.
Athlete’s Foot — going barefoot is something children love to do but it leaves little feet open to athlete’s foot and other fungal infections, which are spread by direct contact. Fungi thrive in warm, moist places like the town pool and beachside changing areas and restrooms. Have your children wear flip flops or shower shoes in these areas and encourage them not to share socks, shoes, towels and any items that touch other children’s feet.
Ankle Sprains — sports, camp field days and just playing in the yard all mean a lot more running around than most children get during the school year on a daily basis (unless they are very active on sports teams). Avoid ankle twisting injuries by being sure your child is wearing supportive sneakers. Although today you can find flip flops with decent arch support for children, these are not appropriate for sports and running.?
Sunburn — children's feet are just as susceptible to sunburn as the rest of the body and one bad sunburn as a child can increase the risk of skin cancer down the road. Choose a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher that is water-resistant and protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Apply not only on beach or pool days but at times when your child is wearing sandals and will be out for several hours during the day.?
If your child complains of foot pain, take it seriously. Sometimes younger children are unable to articulate where it hurts but parents need to be on the lookout for signs of foot discomfort, such as limping, complaining that "feet are tired" and not joining in sports and other activities that they normally enjoy. If you have any concerns about your child’s feet, make an appointment at our Somers Point office by calling: (609) 927-4894. Our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco, will examine your child’s feet and determine if there is a problem.