Intoeing means that when a child walks or runs, the feet turn inward instead of pointing straight ahead. This is commonly referred to as "pigeon-toed."
Intoeing is often first noticed by parents when a baby begins to walk. Children at various ages may display intoeing for different reasons. Sometimes, severe intoeing may cause young children to stumble or trip as they catch their toes on the other heel.
In the vast majority of children younger than 8 years old, intoeing will almost always correct itself without the use of casts, braces, surgery, or any special treatment.
There are three conditions that often cause intoeing:
- Curved foot (metatarsus adductus)
- Twisted shin (tibia torsion)
- Twisted thighbone (femoral anteversion)
Each of these conditions may run in families. Because they result from developmental or genetic problems, these conditions usually cannot be prevented.