What is orthotic therapy?
Orthotics are shoe inserts that are individually prescribed and designed to support, align or assist the lower limb function during walking and running. Orthotics are ideal for those experiencing reoccurring leg or foot pain or children who are constantly tripping and falling. Orthotics are prescribed to help correct any malalignments within the lower limb and to accommodate any pains that the ageing may experience either through arthritis and general wear and tear. Athletes can also benefit from orthotics which can help enhance their performance and minimise injuries. The main 2 types of orthotics are pre fabricated insoles and customised orthotics.
Pre fabricated insoles
These are a functional device which are available in a collection of generic sizes, they are usually required for patients that have a relatively normal foot function, with no or little deformity. These can come with additions to customise the device for an individual but offer little extra control for the foot.
These are a functional device which are engineered specifically for an individual. Additions are added in production of the device and offer more control for the foot in those that have major malalignments in comparison to the prefabricated device.
- Gradually wear in your devices, essentially you should wear the devices for an hour on the first day and gradually increase an hour a day
- Initially some discomfort will be noted, but after one week you should be able to wear them more comfortably
- If you are experiencing pain after 2 weeks of wearing your devices, should stop wearing them and contact your Podiatrist
- Good footwear is advised to be worn with new orthotics as these will help stabilise the orthotic and give you added support
- Annual reviews should be done for the prefabricated devices to determine if they are still working and every 3-4 years for customised orthotics
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