Intoeing is a term used for toes that point inward. It is common in babies and young children. Intoeing is also called “pigeon-toed.”
Intoeing may be caused by the baby’s position in the mother’s womb before birth. It’s usually present from birth but you may not notice it until your child starts walking. Some types of intoeing may not be obvious until your child is 5 or 6 years old. Intoeing is usually caused by a twisting of the thighbone, shinbone, or bones in the foot.
Your healthcare provider will ask about your child's symptoms and medical history and examine your child.
Most children don’t need treatment. Usually intoeing gets better on its own. When it’s caused by a shinbone that twists inward, intoeing usually gets better once your child starts standing and walking. If it’s caused by a thighbone twisted in at the hip, the main treatment is simply having your child not cross his legs. The problem usually gets better when your child starts school and has to sit in chairs.
If there is a problem with one or both of your child’s feet, special shoes usually help. In severe cases, your child’s healthcare provider may put a cast on your child’s feet and lower legs. Casts are most often used before your child is 8 months old. Surgery is only rarely needed.
Follow the instructions your child’s healthcare provider gives you. Ask your provider:
Make sure you know when your child should come back for a checkup.