What are the Benefits of Custom Orthotics?
Custom orthotics are typically fashioned to fit the exact shape of your feet and can be produced using a range of materials, including plastic and foam. This handy guide will introduce you to some of the benefits of custom orthotics and how they could improve your quality of life. Whether you are looking to tackle arthritis or improve your athletic performance, our podiatrist can offer guidance about whether custom orthotics are right for you.
What are the Main Benefits of Custom Orthotics?
Custom orthotics can offer several excellent benefits, including:
- Pain relief: If you suffer from chronic foot and limb pain, you will know that aches and niggles can disrupt your everyday life. Orthotics represent an effective, affordable, and medication-free solution that provides reliable relief throughout the day.
- Support for the whole foot: Custom orthotics redistribute pressure on the feet, ensuring you remain comfortable throughout the day (even if you are on your feet for hours at a time!)
- Foot and body realignment: Did you know that structural abnormalities in the feet can affect your posture and lead to issues such as knee, hip, and back pain from misalignment? Orthotics help to realign your feet, hips, legs, and spine to reduce the likelihood of aches and pains throughout the body.
- Cushioning and support for foot deformities: Mass-produced shoes and inserts are designed to accommodate foot deformities such as high arches, bunions, or flat feet. Orthotics can help to address this problem, ensuring your feet receive the bespoke support they deserve.
What Problems can Custom Orthotics Help Correct?
So, who are the best candidates for receiving custom orthotics? If you would like help with any of the following issues, a set of high-quality orthotics could relieve some of your uncomfortable symptoms:
- Foot deformities: Foot deformities such as hammertoes, bunions, mallet toes, claw toes, and high arches can cause significant pain, stiffness, and difficulty walking. Custom orthotics help to alleviate this pain by reducing pressure on the foot and ensuring other treatments you receive work as effectively as possible.
- Foot and ankle support: If you are unsteady on your feet or experience frequent foot and ankle pain, custom orthotics could reduce your risk of sprains and misalignments.
- Reducing your risk of injury: If you are an active or sporty person, custom orthotics will provide the support you need to reduce your risk of strains, sprains, and other injuries. Orthotics could even boost your athletic performance through proper alignment of the feet, potentially increasing your speed, power, and endurance.
- Back pain: If you are unsure about the source of your back pain, it is worth considering foot and ankle issues as potential causes. Misalignment of the feet and lower limbs can negatively affect your pelvis and spine, and cause long-term back pain. Fortunately, custom orthotics represent an excellent solution that could spare you many years of discomfort!
- Arthritis: By reducing pressure on the joints and absorbing shocks when your feet strike the ground, orthotics can make walking and moving much easier for arthritis patients.
- Flat feet: Flat feet occur when the arches of the feet come into contact with the ground. In the long term, this deformity can cause misalignment of the feet and ankles, increasing your risk of tendinitis, fasciitis, and overuse strains. Custom orthotics help to improve these symptoms by lifting your arches from the ground and stabilizing the feet.
- Hammertoes: Hammertoes occur when the middle joints of the toes start to bend, causing pain and misalignment. Orthotics help to combat these symptoms by absorbing shocks, improving stability, and reducing pressure on the toes.
- Heel spurs: Heel spurs are bony, painful protrusions that appear on the heel bone. They are often caused by excessive pressure on the foot muscles and ligaments, so custom orthotics can prevent spurs from worsening and alleviate pain.
- Bunions: Bunions are joint deformities that usually appear at the base of the big toe. Orthotics can help improve mobility at the big toe joint, reduce the progression of the deformity, and the need for more invasive bunion treatments.
- Plantar fasciitis: This painful condition is caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue running along the bottom of the foot. Plantar fasciitis is typically caused by repetitive strain, overuse, or poorly fitting shoes.
- High arches: High arches occur when the arch of the foot is too high, causing ankle misalignment, poor balance, and difficulties with physical activity. Orthotics represent a simple and very effective solution to this issue.
When Should I Ask My Podiatrist About Custom Orthotics?
Wondering whether your foot pain warrants a trip to the podiatrist? Here are some tell-tale signs you may need custom orthotics:
- You have foot pain and swelling: Foot pain and swelling are symptoms of several foot conditions, including deformities and arthritis. A podiatrist will help diagnose the root cause of your pain and ensure you receive the best treatment for your situation.
- You have sharp heel pain: Sharp heel pain can signify a range of issues, including heel spurs, fractures, nerve entrapment, plantar fasciitis, and Achilles tendinitis. While orthotics may not treat every issue, they may offer helpful relief alongside other treatments.
- You have flat feet or high arches: Many people inherit flat feet or high arches from their parents. If you suspect you may have such genetic deformities, it is worth seeking confirmation from a podiatrist who can offer helpful solutions.
- Your shoes are wearing out unevenly: If your shoes are wearing out at an angle, your feet are likely misaligned. Orthotics can help to rectify this issue and prevent all types of body pain.
- You have experienced a lower limb injury: If you have experienced an injury such as a stress fracture or shin splints, orthotics could aid recovery by realigning your ankles and reducing pressure on your limb.
- You have diabetic foot concerns: By distributing weight evenly across the bottom of the foot, orthotics can help relieve pressure points, prevent callus build-up, and reduce your chances of developing a diabetic ulceration and infection.
Reach Out to Crystal Podiatry Today!
Custom orthotics can help to address many types of foot pain and restore your quality of life. For more information about orthotics and to speak to our friendly podiatrist, do not hesitate to get in touch today at (252) 638-4700 or via our online form.