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What Are The Advantages Of Orthotics?
An orthopedic shoe may have a myriad of names such as orthotics, insoles, footbeds, and inserts, but they all basically mean the same thing. Virtually no one has perfect feet, which is why orthotics can help you alleviate foot pain among a large number of other advantages. Having said this, orthotics may make more sense for some people than others. Which is why you should look at the individual signs whether they would provide you with any benefits.
The Different Types Of Orthotics
There are generally two options when it comes to orthotics, and they each offer different kinds of support for your feet. They also have the ability to ease pain and discomfort in the long-term.
Inserts: The most common form of orthotics are known as inserts and they’re readily available at any store without a prescription. Manufactured from common materials such as plastic, foam or gel, they work with any pair of shoes you already own to enhance comfort. Though these options aren’t customized for you, they can still help relieve foot pressure around your heels and toes.
Orthotics: Unlike inserts, orthotics require a professional prescription in order to customize the insert. They can help you address major pain points with walking, running or standing. Orthotics are also able to help you control certain conditions such as plantar fasciitis, diabetes, arthritis, and bursitis. Additionally, they can treat or prevent bunions, tendonitis, and neuromas.
How Podiatrists Conclude Whether You Need Orthotics
First and foremost, a podiatrist will test you to see if you experience any of the following:
-You stand more than five hours per day.
-You experience pain in your heel or foot.
-Your shoes are too worn.
-Your arches are too high or non-existent.
-You have suffered an injury.
Usually, when an appointment is scheduled, a podiatrist asks for imaging of your feet in order to do a comprehensive exam. They will also examine how you walk, run, and stand while also noting how your hips and feet move. A podiatrist will also perform a physical exam to get a better idea of potential ailments.
If a podiatrist then determines you’ll need orthotics, a special mold is created of your feet. The mold is then finally turned into a custom pair of orthotics.
Rigid and functional orthotics are usually manufactured from carbon fibers or plastic because they provide sturdy support against aches and pains for your feet. They are made for closed-toed or walking shoes due to the nature of their design. These orthotics can also help ease the effects of back and leg pain over time.
Soft or accommodative orthotics are made from soft materials like foam that can compress. They offer cushion against extra pressure on your feet and help add comfort to sore areas.
Advice For Wearing Orthotics
Orthotics, whether custom or store bought, should properly fit into the soles of your shoes. It is important that they don’t cause discomfort such as rubbing, pain or pressure. Getting used to your new form of support may take time, but you should never feel uncomfortable with your orthotics.
Do your shoes have existing arch supports or old orthotics? If so, it is important to remove them if applicable. Orthotics are meant to provide support over a flat surface, which is why your shoes should remain a blank canvas. Take a look at Cobb Hill shoes for the perfect shoe.
Though custom orthotics aren’t as affordable as lower priced store bought alternatives, they are a much better long-term investment. Not only will you receive foot support that’s completely molded to your needs, but you’ll get many years of use out of them. In some instances, your insurance company may cover these costs.
You can wash your orthotics with mild soap and water, but never submerge in water. Always leave them out to dry on a flat surface. Your podiatrist will probably have care instructions ready for you!
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions, and data contained in these publications are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of Credihealth and the editor(s).
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