ABC SPECIAL NEWS REPORT – Ties To Pain
features Dr James Stoxen DC
By Silvia Perez
February 23, 2005
We’ve all heard of the damaging affects of backpacks and our children’s health. But how often do parents worry about their children’s feet?
One Chicago health professional says it’s time they started.
He calls it pronation syndrome. A Chicago chiropractor says more children are dealing with back pain today because of this problem.
The culprit: shoes that are trendy and in demand. It’s not just the shoes, but also how America’s kids are wearing them.
Whatever you call them, hiphop shoes, gym shoes or athletic shoes, it’s all about the style. Many times, children wear the shoes with the laces untied.
But can that fashion trend literally be a pain in the back?
Chiropractor James Stoxen thinks so. He says some gym shoes were never meant to be worn more than 3 to 4 hours at a time. Add to the fact that many youngsters don’t even tie them and Stoxen says that just makes things worse.
“So what’s happening is the side support mechanism is no longer useful to keep the heel on center and they don’t tie it so the heel just rolls,” said James Stoxen, D.C., Chiropractor “Team Doctors”
Stoxen calls that excessive rolling of the heel pronation syndrome. He says it results in a domino effect that can leave children with major back pain.
“This heel will collapse and then all the other bones in the feet will collapse and all the other bones will collapse causing stress and strain on the knee. Cracking knees aching legs low back pain,” said Stoxen.
Daniel Arguello, 13, says that’s what sent him to see Stoxen. He’s a national champion taekwondo competitor and just assumed his back pain was coming from all of his kicks and fancy moves.
“My lower back really hurt. I was in a lot of pain. I though it would go away but it just stayed there,” said Daniel Arguello, chiropractic patient.
He says he later discovered it was his shoes. After giving Daniel chiropractic therapy, Stoxen put him in shoes with a better heel and ankle support. Now Daniel says the pain is gone.
There is no scientific evidence pronation syndrome really exists. But Stoxen believes it’s the basis for a huge percentage of back pain not only in children but in many adults today– leading to herniated discs and more.
School College podiatrist, Stephanie Wu says she hasn’t seen an increase in kids with back pain —but says –most kids may not notice it right away and won’t feel the effects until later in life.
“In theory if you think about it the interconnection of the joints is very much possible that foot problems would relate to lower back problems,” said Stephanie Wu, DPM, podiatrist, School/Rosalind Franklin Univ.
So, what’s a parent to do? Here are some suggestions:
- First make sure you’re child ties their shoes.
- Check the fit – not to big and not too small. The sides of the shoes in the heel should be stiff to bend offering heel support from the site.
- Don’t buy shoes with steel islets as the laces slip on these.
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