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3 Orthotic devices to keep you on your feet

Learn which orthotic device may be right for you based on the severity of your foot pain.

Walking without pain is something we all take for granted, until we’re faced with an issue that affects every step we take. If you’ve experienced foot pain, you’ve likely tried all sorts of different exercises, and over the counter insoles and other foot products. While these over the counter solutions may have offered some relief, chances are they haven’t completely solved your issue with foot pain.

While over the counter foot products are beneficial for some minor foot issues, they are typically not designed to deal with prolonged foot pain. If you’re still dealing with foot pain, despite trying a variety of over the counter options, it may be time to look into custom orthotics. These devices are specifically made for your feet to help match the way you move. Custom orthotics can only be made after your gait, legs, feet and ankles are all carefully examined to determine where your issues may lie.

There are a number of orthotic devices that can help with foot pain. A few of the most common types include:

Over-the-counter orthotic shoe insoles

As mentioned above, over the counter orthotics are typically soft to medium density insoles that are available online, from most drug stores, as well as some chiropractors and physiotherapists. The way these insoles typically work is that they’re made from EVA, which is a flexible yet firm material that will mold to the wearer’s foot shape. These insoles are meant to support the foot, without hurting the arches.

Rigid orthotics

Rigid orthotics are meant for individuals dealing with severe foot pain that is much worse than common issues such as a small degree of over-pronation that many of us deal with on a daily basis. These custom made orthotics must be prescribed by a podiatrist and are individually designed to meet the needs of the patient. After making a diagnosis, a podiatrist will have a plaster cast made with a negative impression of the patient’s feet. This cast is then shipped to the orthotics manufacturer where a positive cast is formed by pouring plaster into the negative mold created by the podiatrist. The result is an identical replica of the underside of the foot. Next a custom made orthotic can be made from this copy. The end result is a rigid or semi-rigid orthotic which is biomechanically correct based on the patient’s foot mold.

Heat moldable orthotics

These orthotics are a less expensive option compared to rigid orthotics. These are a standard, off-the-shelf orthotic that is made typically from medium-density EVA material. The device is then heated to change shape to produce a more customized orthotic. Heat moldable orthotics are much less expensive than rigid orthotics and can typically be modified in your local podiatrists’ office.

Still unsure of whether you’re a good candidate for orthotics?

If you’re experiencing foot pain, and can’t seem to find relief from the array of over the counter options on the market, it may be time to consult with a podiatrist like Dr. Nina Coletta.

Dr. Coletta has years of experience helping her patients with all types of custom orthotics. Feel free to reach out to Broward County’s leading podiatric practitioner, Dr. Coletta at 954-452-4590 today.

Nina L. Coletta, DPM, PA

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