Understanding In-toeing | Pigeon toes

Intoe-ing, or being pigeon-toed, is a common condition among children. This is when the legs are angled inwards like a pigeon, making the child have an awkward posture and possibly causing them to be clumsy as well, with tripping and falling being common sights. It can also be painful for the legs and feet, though these are often dismissed as “growing pains”.

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What causes In-toeing?

Like knock knees and bow legs, in-toeing is caused by the natural angle of the child’s legs. Infants start with their legs rotated inwards, and gradually de-rotate as they begin crawling, standing, then walking. By the time they turn two and a half years old, their legs should look like the picture on the right – reasonably straight with a mild, flat arch.

In-toeing is common in children, especially infants.| Family Podiatry Centre | Best Foot Doctor Podiatrist DPM Clinic Singapore Malaysia

Best In-toeing Treatment

Most cases of intoe-ing resolve themselves with time, as the legs correct their angle over the years. By the time children reach the age of six, the legs should resemble regular adult legs, and not many rotational changes occur after that. 

However, in some cases this de-rotation is delayed, and this will result in in-toeing even at older ages. Fortunately, most cases are treatable, but will require an examination first to assess the severity of the condition and how the treatment should be customized to address it.

If your child is still experiencing in-toeing even after they have started walking fully, do not hesitate to book a consultation with us to see what should be done.

Written by Mark B. Reyneker
Written by Mark B. Reyneker

Based in Singapore, 20 years of clinical experience. Practiced in South Africa, Malaysia, and Singapore. Pioneered CAD/CAM custom-made orthotics in S.E Asia.

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