Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Jack's AFO

It was a big day in Jackland last week when he got his first AFO (ankle foot orthodic). That weekend, I spent a whole day shopping around Helena to find a shoe that would work with the brace. It was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I took the AFO to the stores with me and tried the shoes on it. I had to find a shoe that had a pretty wide opening for the foot to go in, enough room around the ankle with laces, and a wide enough toe. There are companies that make special shoes for AFO's, but frankly, they are UGLY.

I ended up getting shoes a size bigger than Jack is actually in (to fit the AFO), and I took the insert out of the left shoe and put it in the right. This made room for the AFO and added some extra padding to the other shoe. It works pretty good! We had the best luck with Puma, Nike, and Converse brand and I came home with three new pairs of shoes... not that Jack really needed that many. It's just hard to know what works until you try it. I was most worried that we would have to buy two separate sizes and that can get pricey when they grow out of their shoes every month!

The AFO makes all the difference in the world. Jack stands much straighter and has so much more stability. His left foot is forced to remain flat. For those that aren't familiar, many kids with cerebral palsy (CP) toe walk. Depending on the severity of the CP in regards to gross motor skills, an AFO (on one or both feet) just might be the trick to getting a child to eventually walk. I am not kidding when I say this, but Jack is so, so, so close to just taking off. He wants it so badly. He wants to move. He is not interested in his toys anymore and only wants us to walk him around!

Without further ado, here is Jack in all his AFO glory

now if only we could get him to let us use the toothbrush

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Shannon said...

Awesome! I bet he's crusing in no time.

Julie said...

Those Pumas are so CUTE! Love the pairing with the monkey jammies. :) Can't wait to see him take off.

Emily Real said...

So glad to hear this, Jessi!! Praying for you guys and so excited for your little superman!

rheateach said...

We just got our daughters AFO's today. We had to go to Stride Rite to find her shoes. Thankfully they are cute and were on sale! Hallelujah!

Jessi said...

@rheateach - awesome!!