4 Questions to Ask About Custom Orthotics
Custom orthotics are customized gadgets that support and comfort the anatomical arches of your feet while standing and walking. If you have high arches, flat feet, or conditions like plantar fasciitis or arthritis, you may require custom orthotics. Consult Dr. Danielle L. Shaper, DPM, at Finesse Footcare, who will guide if custom orthotics are right for you. For more information, contact us or schedule an appointment online. We are conveniently located at 5035 Mayfield Rd Lyndhurst, OH 44124.
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We rely on the comfort and mobility of our feet to get around and function easily on a daily basis, so it is very common for us to start to have pain or inflammation when standing or walking for a long period of time while wearing poorly fitted shoes. Good quality shoes will make a difference, as will the addition of department store inserts, but there are many cases in which the feet have developed a condition or an injury that requires even more specified pressure relief that can often only be sought through a custom orthotic.
Custom orthotics are recommended for those who are prone to inflammation and pain when wearing normal shoes as the orthotics will include extra cushion in the specific areas for which the person is experiencing the most pressure. There are certain conditions that may make someone more likely to be prescribed custom orthotics, including:
– Those with very high arches
– Those with flat feet
– Those who have suffered from a lower limb injury that affects their gait
– Those who have suffered from a tight Achilles tendon
– Those who regularly experience swelling or pain when walking or standing for too long
– Those who have problems with their balance or tend to fall over
– Those who are overweight or obese
– Those who have developed diabetic foot complications
Anyone who is experiencing significant discomfort just from walking or standing for long periods of time could be eligible to receive custom orthotics if their physician agrees that they would be beneficial for the patient’s comfort and mobility.
The main difference between custom orthotics and inserts is that anyone can purchase inserts at a shoe store or department store that will provide cushioning in general areas that commonly benefit from pressure relief, whereas custom orthotics will be prescribed to you by a physician and will be custom fitted for your foot to provide extra pressure relief in your specific problem areas. Custom orthotics will definitely be a bit more expensive, but are always good quality and will last a bit longer than inserts, providing substantially more relief both short- and long-term. Inserts are a good temporary option for those who may not have the budget for custom orthotics yet or whose discomfort is not significant yet, particularly recommended for those who have no specific problems with their feet but spend a lot of time every day standing or walking and would benefit from some pressure relief.
Generally speaking, it is recommended that you wear your custom orthotics as frequently as possible once you have adjusted to wearing them. It is common for it to take a couple of weeks to get used to wearing them, with some people experiencing minor discomfort when they first start wearing their custom orthotics for significant amounts of time. In order to benefit from wearing them, the orthotics will need to be worn as much as possible, preferably whenever you are going to be doing a significant amount of standing or walking. Custom orthotics do not last forever though, with the average person being able to get 2 to 3 years of daily wear out of them before they need to be replaced, but this also depends on how active you are and how often you actually wear them, as people who are less active will be able to get a couple of more years out of their orthotics before they have worn down too much, and others may need to replace them after only one year.
Most shoes can be compatible with custom orthotics by just placing them into the shoe (you may have to remove the insole that comes with the shoe in order for it to fit), but there are quite a few shoes that will not be able to accommodate the height of the orthotic in addition to your foot simply due to lack of volume in the shoe. This is a common problem for dress shoes, as they tend to be a bit of a tighter fit in general. Most sneakers or running shoes should fit the custom orthotic just fine.
Looking for custom orthotics? Visit us at Finesse Footcare. For more information, contact us or schedule an appointment online. We are conveniently located at 5035 Mayfield Rd Lyndhurst, OH 44124. We serve patients from Lyndhurst OH, Chagrin Falls OH, Beachwood OH, Pepper Pike OH, Woodmere OH, Hunting Valley OH, Solon OH, Mayfield OH, Moreland Hills OH, Orange OH and surrounding areas.