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Old 05-30-2012, 05:50 AM   #1
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When does toe-walking become a concern?

DD is almost 5 (7/10) and still walks on her toes ALL the time. We've tried to get her to put her heel down, but she says it hurts (in the achilles tendon area). Should we do something about this, or will she outgrow it?
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:44 AM   #2
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Re: When does toe-walking become a concern?

We didn't do anything until age 7 and by then that back leg muscle was already tight, but he could put his heels down without pain. It sounds like your DD is tighter than my DS. I would go ahead and look into it. I think after age 3 or 4 it's no longer developmentally normal.

We are doing PT once a week with exercises at home every day. If he doesn't get much better, we are going to look into bracing.
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:53 AM   #3
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Re: When does toe-walking become a concern?

My girls aren't walking yet (26 weekers) but the PT/OT told me to discourage it right from the start. They mentioned that even children w/ no toning can cause themselves issues with this habit.
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Old 05-30-2012, 07:02 AM   #4
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My sister is 31 and still does this. It never hurt her, but was always super awkward.

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Old 05-30-2012, 08:00 AM   #5
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Yes, talk to your doctor. If it is consistent and she says walking 'normal' hurts, there may be a medical issue. If it's only to play or when excited, and they can walk normally, it is less of a concern. Toe walking can be an extremely mild form of cerebral palsy (where it is often one of only a few issues, or the only issue) or related to muscle tension. The sooner it is addressed the better.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:43 AM   #6
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Re: When does toe-walking become a concern?

She has her 5-year well-child visit in 6 weeks, so I'll bring it up then. Thanks!
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:47 AM   #7
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It is normal with no other signs until age 3. So yeah, have it looked at.

My dd walks on hers, but she does it because of ASD and not tightness of the achilles.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:58 AM   #8
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Have it looked at sooner rather than later. If she does need surgery, the earlier you do it the less invasive it is. A friend waited too long for her son (he is 8 )and they are looking at a 6 month recovery, as opposed to a 6 week recovery for the kind of surgery they do when kids are younger. We were referred to an orthopedic surgeon for DD when she was 2 and still toe walking. He put her in physical therapy and AFOs to work on it with a PT who had extensive sensory background. There can be a physical cause and there also can be a sensory cause.
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Old 05-30-2012, 10:12 AM   #9
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Re: When does toe-walking become a concern?

I'm not worried about ASD with her. DS has that (but doesn't toe-walk) and she doesn't have any of those symptoms.
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Old 05-30-2012, 10:40 AM   #10
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Re: When does toe-walking become a concern?

My nephew is 3 1/2 and has walked on his toes since he could walk. He can walk flat foot, but doesn't normally. He has mitochondrial disease, as a result has mild autism, which they associate the tiptoeing with...which is new to me! I knew a few kids growing that did that until at least middle school! I think they eventually just outgrew it, as I know one didn't wear a brace and just made a mental effort as an older kid to quit.
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