How to Treat Your Toddler Foot Pain at Night – The Best Shoes for Foot and Leg Pain!
Does your toddler wake up in the middle of the night complaining about foot and leg pain? Has your pediatrician diagnosed your toddler with “growing pains” but you are afraid that it might be something more serious? Let me show you how to treat your toddler foot pain at night.
How many kids have growing pains that are ignored? Almost all of them! Why doesn’t the child have pain in the arms? The arm is growing as well, or in the neck, the teeth, etc. The reason is that it’s the foot that is causing the pain!
Every time a toddler complains about foot pain, I recommend parents be proactive and don’t take the “wait and see approach” that a lot of pediatricians seem to recommend.
I want to convey something to you. I know how to treat and prevent your toddler’s foot and leg pain at night, but you have to be willing to be proactive and take action immediately. The longer that you wait the higher the chances that your toddler might suffer from a more serious foot condition as he/she gets older.
Experiences from other Families – Can You Relate?
I have been contacted by several families with toddlers who wake up at night crying and screaming from the pain and they want to know how they can prevent this from happening. These are some of the most common questions that parents have asked me and that you might be asking yourself:
- My 2-year-old child keeps waking up in the middle of the night crying with pains in his feet and legs. I am really worried because he is losing up to an hour of sleep at night. I would like to know what is causing the pain and whether I should see a doctor about this?
- My 3-year-old child keeps waking up in the middle of the night in pain, with a tight grip on her leg. I have also noticed that she also complains about pain during the day. Our pediatrician said that it’s growing pains and she should outgrow them soon. Could it be something more serious?
- My 20-month-old toddler has been saying “feet and toes hurt” for the last month as we get him ready to sleep. I am starting to worry that there is something more serious going on with his feet. Can you please advise me on what to do?
- My two-year-old son wakes up twice every night complaining that his feet hurt and asks me to rub his feet. Is there something I can do about this? I check his shoes and they seem to fit him just fine.
If you relate to any of these questions, then you came to the right place because I am going to show you the 2 most common reasons why toddlers complain about foot and leg pain at night, and how to prevent this from happening.
My Toddler Has Growing Pains – Could it be More Serious?
Let me start by telling you that I completely disagree with the term “growing pains”. This term has been used to describe foot and leg pains in children for decades, but it is a very inaccurate diagnosis and seems to conclude that it is a “normal” pain with growing.
The pain that your toddler is experiencing can be associated with an underlying disease, poorly fitted shoes, or overuse from long walks or high-impact activities. Experiencing foot pain at night seems more common in active toddlers, and toddlers with hypermobile joints.
Believe me when I tell you that there is a reason why your toddler is complaining about foot or leg pain at night. The pain is usually a result of your toddler’s feet and legs working too hard. For example, when a toddler has a particular foot condition such as low muscle tone, rolled ankles, or flat feet (just to mention a few) then their muscles end up being overworked. This usually leads to foot and leg pain.
This experience has afforded me many insights into children’s shoes and the way they fit. Our store specializes in shoes for children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. Due to my experience in fitting thousands of kids, I became familiar with the best shoes for toddlers who suffer from pain at night.
I believe that there are 2 main causes of why toddlers experience foot and leg pain at night and below are listed in order of importance:
Reason# 1: Poorly Fitted Shoes or Shoes that Don’t Provide the Correct Amount of Support
Shoes that are not the correct size can be the main cause of why your toddler is experiencing foot and leg pain at night. You always need to make sure that your toddler’s shoes are not too short, too narrow, too long, or too wide.
I always recommend parents take their toddlers to their local shoe store to be fitted for shoes, so let’s start by making sure that you don’t have a good-fitting children’s shoe store in your area. While most specialized children’s shoe stores have been closing down, there are still certain stores that do a great job fitting children’s shoes.
If after looking at that resource you still can’t seem to find a store in your area, then take a look at another article I wrote where I describe how to figure out your toddler’s foot size in 2 simple steps from home.
In that article I help parents determine their child’s exact foot size and whether the child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet. I also will be able to tell you whether your child has a high instep or not.
In addition to the shoes being the correct size, I recommend providing your toddler with a pair of supportive shoes to improve your toddler’s foot function and stop the foot and leg muscles from being overworked. In addition to being supportive, your toddler’s shoes need to be lightweight and flexible at the same time. It’s important that your toddler’s shoes are not too heavy as we don’t want your toddler’s feet and legs to get tired easily.
When children have a particular foot condition or a foot imbalance, their walking gait and posture are affected, which leads them to put extra weight in certain parts of their feet and legs where they are not supposed to.
Reason #2: Foot Conditions such as Low Muscle Tone, Flat Feet or Rolled Ankles
Low muscle tone, flat feet, or rolled ankles are very common conditions among toddlers. All children are born with flat feet, but if the condition persists as they keep growing up then it leads to a foot imbalance and poor posture habits.
As far as low muscle tone concerns, it’s simply a lack of tone in your toddler’s muscles, which can make your toddler’s muscles feel too relaxed. Having low muscle tone doesn’t necessarily mean that your toddler is weak. However, your toddler has to put in a lot of extra effort to get the muscles moving properly, which results in your toddler’s feet and legs being overworked.
Do you want to know what all of these foot conditions have in common? They can be treated and prevented by wearing the correct type of shoes.
What Are the Best Orthotics for Toddlers?
Before you leave, I wanted to let you know that if your toddler is already wearing the correct type of shoes, then you might have to provide your toddler with a pair of orthotics for extra support. Orthotics are extremely effective in treating and preventing foot conditions such as low muscle tone, flat feet, or rolled ankles. The correct type of orthotic is going to prevent your toddler’s feet and legs from being overworked, and they will also help improve your toddler’s overall posture.
Do you have a toddler who complains about foot and leg pain at night? Have you found an effective way to significantly reduce or fully eliminate your toddler’s foot and leg pain at night? Please share your findings below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.