Custom made foot orthotics.
Our feet are the foundation of our being. Surprisingly, most people ignore their feet until something starts to bother them. Only at time time, do people start to appreciate their feet, and what they do for them. Fortunately, there are many tools a Chiropodist can use to help with foot pain, one of these tools is orthotic therapy.
Orthotics can significantly improve the quality of one’s life.
What Are Orthotics?
Orthotics are inserts for your shoes designed to support your feet. These fall into two categories: over-the-counter and custom made.
Over-the-counter orthotics are generically made to a neutral foot type and can be purchased in a drug store. They vary in their ability to support your feet and may not address issues.
Custom orthotics are made specifically for your feet. Custom measurements are taken, to ensure precise fitting of the size, width and contour of your feet.
Custom made Orthotics, however, are a much more sophisticated version. These medical devices are prescribed and made to specific molds of your foot and provide the exact support that your foot requires.
Casting for orthotics can be taken in many ways. However, the College of Chiropodist of Ontario (our regulatory body) allows their regulated members to only cast for orthotics using a 3D laser scanner or by plaster casting. The two methods with proven better outcomes for patients.
Custom made orthotics go far beyond what those drugstore inserts can do and provide relief from significant foot and leg pain, knee pain and back pain. In some cases, they can even help the wearer avoid surgery for conditions like flat feet.
What Conditions Can Orthotics Help With?
Orthotics can not only help with foot problems but also various other conditions. Let’s look at a few problems that orthotics can rectify.
Orthotics can help relieve pressure created by foot deformities and like high arches, flat feet, hammertoes, bunions, and heel spurs.
Since diabetics are at higher risk for foot complications diabetic custom orthotics are a great way to help prevent problems from developing.
The feet and gait can be affected by neurological conditions like a stroke or Parkinson’s disease. Carful orthotic design can significantly help with their gait.
Since the feet are the foundation of the body, they can affect other parts higher up the kinetic chain as well. For example, people commonly find relief from back pain by using orthotics because the problem lies within their feet.
Orthotics can also help with complications from certain diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and diabetes. They may also be used temporarily while healing from a foot or ankle injury.
Types of Orthotics
Orthotics come in a range of types and sizes. Some people require a full-shoe insert, whereas others may only need a small heel insert. Orthotics can also be longer, encompassing both the foot and the calf. This is called an AFO or an Ankle-Foot Orthosis.
Orthotics can be either rigid — made from plastic or carbon fibre — or accommodative — made from soft compression materials.
Rigid orthotics are typically used to correct physical problems with the foot. In otherwords, when your foot doesn’t function the way that it should.
Soft orthotics are used to provide cushioning and relieve pressure from foot conditions such as plantar fasciitis.
So many types of material exist to design orthotics with. Let you chiropodist help you chose what is best for your specific needs.
Are Orthotics Worth it?
Absolutely! Just ask a fellow orthotics wearer who can again do what they love because of their orthotics.
Chiropodists are the only health care professionals regulated in the area of Orthotics. What this means for you is that you can rest assured that we are held accountable to give you the best care you get from start to fish and beyond.
Orthotics are prescription medical devices, that may be covered by your insurance.