The term "fallen arches" refers to a progressive foot condition in which the arch, in the middle of the foot, begins to fall and causes the foot to become flattened. As a result, elderly adults who suffer from fallen arches often have difficulty walking and may lose their balance more easily. In addition, there can be significant complications with bone health and pain. The tissues tighten and form an arch as children grow older. This will take place by the time the child is 2 or 3 years old. Most people have normal arches by the time they are adults. However, the arch may never form in some people. Usually, flat feet or fallen arches in babies should already disappear as they reach six years of age. This is because the flexibility of the feet is lessened and arches should already be developing. Statistics show that only 1 to 2 out of 10 babies will continue to deal with flat feet as they approach adulthood. Generally, treatment will not be recommended for infants that do not develop arches, unless the foot becomes painful or stiff. Keep in mind that shoe inserts are not the solution and may even contribute to the problem. Consult a doctor to get more accurate recommendations. Additional arch support, or orthoses, are also beneficial and an important aspect of treatment. These range from off the shelf arch lifts to a custom-made device that is made from a mold of your foot. Often orthotic devices can be moved from one pair of shoes to another. The human body is truly fascinating; they are the perfect balance ofbones, flesh, and natural body fluids. Special cushioning is present inour joints and at vital regions in any place on the body that bearsweight. Being flat footed, you most likely have an overpronation running pattern, meaning that the shoe support needs to be focused on the arch area of the sole. Orthotics can be obtained from a foot specialist (podiatrist). These are called custom orthotics and they usually quite hard. Nowadays there are softer orthotics on the market, which are made of EVA and which mold themselves to the wearer's foot shape because of body heat and body weight. These softer orthotics are pre-made and can be very effective in the treatment of Plantar Fasciitis. They are available without a prescription from pharmacies and specialty websites. Rarely, painful flat feet in children may be caused by a condition in which two or more of the bones in the foot grow or fuse together. This condition is called tarsal coalition. Symptoms Gentle stretching of the Plantar Fascia, the Achilles tendon and the calf muscles will all help making your feet and a lot more flexible, which in turn will help reduce the exessive pulling of the Plantar Fascia. Do the stretches fist thing in the morning and avoid walking barefoot on hard floors and tiles. Instead, slip on a pair of shoes with an orthotic inside them. Repeat the exercises (especially the calf stretches) a few times during the day. Surgery for Plantar Fasciitis is rarely required, unless all other treatments have failed to relieve the pain. Surgical procedures include removing a portion of the Plantar Fascia.