Monday, July 24, 2006

Polliwog Power

One of the obstacles for my daughter to overcome before walking is a couple of very floppy weak ankles. Whenever she holds my hands and tries to walk they turn inward and she has to lock her knees in order to feel like she can stand. This makes walking a stiff-legged, awkward process.

After talking with my little one's physical therapist, it turns out that her ankles are really just a symptom and not the real problem. What's needed to get my daughter on her feet with confidence is some more arch support. She recommended a kids product called Polliwogs.

These are foam and plastic shoe inserts that are a mold of the entire bottom of the child's foot. They provide excellent arch support along with a stable base for the entire foot. The toe area is left flexible so the toes can flex as steps are taken. The rest of the foot is wrapped up the sides in plastic to help increase strength and stability without requiring a large uncomfortable brace. This allows my daughter to stand securely on her feet without her arches buckling and her ankles caving inward.

My little girl has been wearing them for increasing amounts of time this past few weeks and she's slowly growing more confident in taking steps when we stand her next to the couch or walk with her holding hands.

This is another important successs in our efforts to get this little girl walking. We're also doing some other exciting things to help in this area. I'll share those as well over the coming weeks.

3 comments:

bella said...

Hey! those are pretty cool! I tried looking up any information about them online, and wasn't able to find anything -- is there a specific brand name, or company name, or anything like that? (I'd love to look into something like that for EK for when she outgrows her DAFO's. Do you mind my asking what kind of cost you are looking at for your daughter's polliwogs? Did she have to be fitted for them (casted?) If she has them now, do you see a difference in her stance when she has them on as opposed to when she doesn't?

I'm so excited for you, and for your little one as well! EK has just started to take her first independent steps as well, and its such a fun stage to experience!

--bella

Nate Hanson said...

Hi Bella,

I might have spelled the name wrong on these things. I'm not sure, but they are casted. Then, based on the molds they made the plastic "foot braces" that are pictured in the post. My wife and I were able to get a set shipped and everything for a little over $50. So it was worth every penny to see this little girl start standing with confidence! :-)

By the way, yes she stands MUCH better with them on than without. That's SO COOL that EK is taking independent steps. What a great milestone to hit. I'm hoping to get my kiddo there in the next six months to a year. We'll see how it goes.

bella said...

That's a great price! Ours were MUCH more (thank goodness they are covered completely by insurance... but I'm afraid to know what might happen when she outgrows them if she doesn't 'qualify' for a second set yet!)

You know, EK went from confident standing to better balance in a VERY short time, and to cruising furniture quickly after that! So, here's hoping your little one does so as well!

Here's to a couple of walking girls!

--bella