Orthotics, unlike typical shoe inserts, are prescribed by a podiatrist to help provide your feet with cushion and support. They can also aid in correcting a specific foot condition that you may be dealing with. Conditions such as diabetes, plantar fasciitis, bursitis, arthritis, and flat feet can highly benefit from the use of orthotics, and orthotics may assist you in alleviating pain that often comes with those ailments.

Orthotics can come in many different shapes and sizes and can be made from different types of materials. The purpose of a custom orthotic is for it to match your specific needs. Some orthotics may be rigid or functional, while others are soft and accommodative. Rigid orthotics are made to help ease foot aches and strains, and they’re made from harder materials like plastic or carbon fiber. Soft orthotics serve to take the pressure off of uncomfortable areas of the feet, such as sores or foot ulcers. This type of orthotic is typically made from soft, compression materials.

Custom orthotics are made to mold to your feet and should fit your shoes perfectly. If you feel like the orthotic isn’t fitted properly, it’s extremely important you let your podiatrist know right away so they can assist in getting you as comfortable as possible.

In order to ensure your orthotic is doing its job, it’s recommended that you keep a healthy line of communication with your podiatrist and visit at their requested schedule. Doing this will keep track of gradual improvement and will allow you to discuss any possible adjustments needed. If you feel orthotics are a treatment option for you, we recommend you meet with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and to discuss how to improve your foot health.

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Foot Orthotics (FAQs)

What are orthotics?
Orthotics are special inserts worn inside the shoes that are designed to treat a variety of foot and ankle problems. They can be custom-made specifically for your feet or bought over-the-counter at most major drug and department stores. Orthotics are generally light-weight, but can be rigid or soft depending on what they are designed to treat. They are often made with a firm foundation with cushioning materials on top.
What conditions can orthotics treat?
Orthotics can be used to correct foot deformities, help the feet and ankles function better, provide support, and reduce the risk of future injuries. They can be used to treat a variety of conditions. These include plantar fasciitis, flat feet, high arches, bunions, bursitis, Morton’s neuroma, Achilles tendinopathy, and many more. Orthotics may also be prescribed to help correct a dysfunctional gait or walking pattern.
Should I get over-the-counter or custom-made orthotics?
The type of orthotics you should get depends on the foot or ankle condition you have and what your treatment goals are. You should discuss your specific needs with your podiatrist to find the right orthotic to help you.
Can orthotics hurt your feet?
Generally, orthotics will not hurt unless they do not fit properly or are worn out. Some people believe that wearing orthotics, and particularly wearing them long-term, can weaken or otherwise harm the feet, however this is not the case. Orthotics are designed to help heal or manage foot and ankle problems to improve your mobility, comfort, and quality of life. If your orthotics are hurting you, let your podiatrist know as soon as possible so that they can figure out why and solve the problem.
When should I get new orthotics?
Orthotic inserts, even those that are custom-made, unfortunately are not built to last forever. Much like your shoes, they undergo wear and tear over time, especially if they are worn frequently. You may need new orthotics if you notice that your current ones are no longer helping relieve your symptoms, are uncomfortable, or are showing signs of wear and tear.


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