Last Modified on Dec 01, 2013
Natural Remedies for Flat Feet
Flat feet are feet with flattened arches that cause the sole of the foot to touch when making contact with the floor. Relatively common, flat feet occur when the arches of the feet do not develop properly during childhood, or sometimes after an injury or as an effect of natural wear and tear. We are all born with flat feet, and as we progress through childhood our arches develop. Some people's arches never develop, and this can lead to issues in the ankles and knees as flat feet aren't optimal for leg alignment; but not everyone experiences pain as a result of their flat feet.
There are over-the-counter orthotics for flat feet such as arch supports that may be inserted into shoes to reduce symptoms such as foot pain in the heel or arch, or swelling in the inside of the ankle.
Find a Cure for Flat Feet
This page is meant for user-submitted cures and discussions for flat feet. This page is still relatively new, and we are actively interested in finding more Home and natural remedies for flat feet. Know of a remedy that belongs here? Please feel free to share your story with us.
First Aid Tape
[YEA] 10/02/2009: Valerie from Germantown, Md: "Fallen Arches: Take some strong first aid tape and tape your arches tightly. Do not tape your whole foot, just the arches. This works better than any inserts you can buy."
[NAY] 09/14/2009: Phil from Dearing, Ga: "Could you guys, please start a section on fallen arches or flat feet? My feet hurt all the time, when standing on concrete. Not so much, if I am on wood floors or the natural earth. Walking does NOT make my feet hurt either. It just seems to be the concrete and standing for long periods of time. I have tried alot of stuff, with varied results and would appreciate any remedies others have tried with sucess. Thank you."Replies
11/01/2009: Outlaw from Norfolk, Va replies: "The best way to get the arches in your feet back is to exercise them. All you have to do is get yourself a piece of a 2 X 4 or 4 X 4 lie it on the floor and place your toes on the board, then push yourself to your tip toes raising your heels off the floor (hold for 3-5 seconds) and repeat for 10 reps for 3 sets. It will take a little bit of time but it works."
11/17/2009: Lulu from Washington, Dc replies: "Hi there. I have a question about whether one can do anything to gain an arch if they never had one in the first place. I have never had arches; have always had flat feet. It impacts what kinds of shoes I can wear (can't wear flats because of discomfort and bad fit) and I would love to find out how to get some kinn of arch it at all possible.. I have not tried the 2x4 or 4x4 remedy suggested because I wonder if I can ever get arches if I've never had them in the first place. Does anybody have any information about this or ideas I can try? Thanks."
02/11/2010: Lera from St Petersburg, Fl replies: "I also have family members with no arches...wrapping with the tape as suggested at the top of the page helps, but also when sitting and watching tv or typing stretch your feet forward... with legs stretched out and heels resting on a coffee table or foot rest, point your toes forward as far as you can for a minute or two, then pull them back as if pointing toward yourself for 30 seconds or so...keep doing this on and off everyday...it has helped strengthened some in my family (who've tried it) I hope it helps strengthen yours:)"
05/28/2010: Edy from San Francisco, Ca replies: "Flat feet, plantar fascitis, hundreds of different shoes, thousands spent on dr's and inserts...nothing helped. I've lifed with this for years. It got so bad at one point stepping on the ground gave me pain. Until I met a pedorathist, forgive the spelling, who taught me to also sit and lift my legs to 90 degrees and stretch out my hamstring. I never could reach my toes even as a child--I've always had flat feet too. Can't wear flats and restricted shoe wear. My feet get tired after awhile. Even running shoes can hurt.
But over a period of months, continued stretching by sitting and touching my toes and flexing my toes as well as standing and touching my toes now, my feet are so much better. I can wear a pair of flat shoes, but not all day. I'll likely never be able to wear flats all day but that's ok. Tee pain is gone, and I've never been able to wear them before so I'm happy.
Yoga helps to strengthen one's feet too. But stretching your hamstrings thus far are the best thing that has helped me.
If you live near the beach walking in sand bare feet helps to stretch that arch out too. According to the man who helped me you can develop an arch, unlikely a high one but you can strengthen thos muscles.
05/29/2010: Mary from Regina, Saskchewan replies: "Hi thank you so much for this info! Would you mind posting the Doctors email or contact information? Thanks"
02/07/2012: Robyn from Melbourne, Australia replies: "I'm not sure flat feet didn't add to my fibromyalgia. Walking on them for 45 yrs twisted my spine, scoliosis, kyphosis and now 3 bulging discs. That's at least 1 layer of pain that I have to take morphine for. Orthotics help. I even have to wear a spongy pair in the shower. Yoga helps - at least with the ham strings. Spine is so twisted it is now stage 4 calcified. Flat feets affects the rest of your posture. Do attend to them."
04/29/2012: Had from White River Jct, Vermont replies: "Hi Phil, I have had this. My BEST treatment is foot insoles from Barefootscience. This is not a 'cast for your foot' it is to build up the muscles so your foot functions properly and heals the stress/strain/pull/swelling and pain in your feet. I purchased about 3 years ago, my feet felt like my heals were being pushed through the ground and my toes would cease up in pain after being on my feet for 1/2 hour or so and arche cramps to cry about. I rarely have foot pain anymore and my shoes are so much more comfortable( I move them from shoe to shoe). I also recently purchased a 'toe separator' looks like rubber brass knuckles, found in foot care section at department store, it widens out your toes to a natural position. Our shoes squish our feet and this helps take away that stress, you put them on and lift your feet and relax for 15 minutes or more(great to do when watching TV) and I've noticed relief all the way to up my neck. Hope this helps you."
05/09/2012: Sonja K from Somerset Center, Michigan, Usa: "I was a tap dancer until age 13 and once I quit dancing my arches fell and now at age 52 I have bunions on both feet causing me a lot of pain no matter what I wear. Is there help for me. I am going to try the rubs with oil and tumeric, but anything I have tried so far has irritated and made the pain even worse. I do not want to have surgery and always try to do natural anytime I can.
Can anyone answer for me or give me encouragement? I so appreciate reading information on your site.
Any help for a friend of mine as the bone in his mouth is degenerating(not sure that is the correct way to put it), but it causes his teeth to be loose and fall out and he is only 45yrs young. Any ideas of what he could do to help this stop, so he doesn't loose all of his teeth. We have tried a prodict called Stem Tech in which he took for back pain and when on this product his teeth were not a loose, so that must have been helping too, but so very costly with no steady work to pay for it.
Thank you for your ideas and possibly help too. Mark & Sonja"Replies
05/09/2012: Debbie from Melbourne, Australia replies: "For your friend with a jaw bone problem, can I suggest comfrey. It has gotten a bad wrap and is said that it causes liver problems so he would need to research it himself. I take it and have read of people taking it for over 30 years with no problems. It is also called "knit bone" because of its ability to heal bone and very quickly. He could take it as a tea and drink it and also swish the comfrey tea around in his mouth or use a comfrey poultice wrapped on his jaw at night.
A website with good info is herbsarespecial.com. Au and look under the herb section. Youtube also has some videos on comfrey."