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Do You Need Orthotics?


20 Mar Do You Need Orthotics?

Are you dealing with achy feet? Is diabetes or arthritis troubling your feet and leaving you in pain? Many people turn to temporary fixes like shoe inserts or over-the-counter medications to help their condition. While standard shoe inserts may provide some comfort, what most people need are custom orthotics.

Orthotics are prescribed devices that you wear inside of your shoes to help correct and alleviate a host of foot and ankle problems. Not only are orthotics more effective, but in many cases, they can aid in avoiding surgery.

Which Type Is Best For You?

  • Functional orthotics are considered rigid, as they’re usually made of plastic or carbon fiber. Rigid orthotics are designed to help with pain in your feet, thighs, and lower back. They can also ease aches and strains in your feet. Functional orthotics are best for shoes with closed toes and low heels.
  • Accommodative orthotics are considered soft. They’re made from compression materials, providing cushioned support to your feet and ankles. Soft orthotics are best for plantar fasciitis and ulcers. Most podiatrists recommend wearing accommodative orthotics with prescribed footwear, as they tend to be bulky.

Custom orthotics can also be specifically designed for sporting shoes like ski boots and ice skates.

Getting Your Orthotics

Custom orthotics are designed to fit your feet perfectly. Your podiatrist will make a precise mold of your feet in the office and then turn it into a soft or rigid orthotic. Because they are prescribed medical devices, the molds should fit well and not cause any discomfort. Most foot doctors will schedule a follow-up appointment to make sure your orthotics are working well. By then, you should notice some improvement in how your feet feel. If not, let your podiatrist know!

Although orthotics are pricier than inserts, you’re getting a lot for your money, including a medical evaluation, custom fit, and top-quality orthotic materials. If the proper care is put into keeping your orthotics in the best condition, they should last for many years.

Here at Alta Ridge Foot Specialists, we care deeply about our patients. Dr. W. Aaron Broyles, Dr. Robert L. Van Brederode, Dr. Thomas Verla, and the rest of our staff at our Mars Hill, Spruce Pine, and Boone, NC, offices are here to help you with any of your foot concerns. To make an appointment, contact us at one of our three locations today.