Some foot and ankle pains come and go, but others come to stay. If you overdid it shopping in shoes that weren't as comfortable as you thought they'd be, your feet may just need a rest. However, if the pain isn't leaving, it's time to contact us. Untreated, foot and ankle pain can become worse and begin to affect the legs and back.
Many foot and ankle problems can be alleviated with special customized inserts called orthotics. Orthotics, also known as orthoses, refers to any device inserted into a shoe, ranging from felt pads to custom-made shoe inserts that correct an abnormal or irregular, walking pattern, prescriptions for orthotics aren't like other prescriptions you've gotten for medications because orthotics are customized to your specific needs. Don't mistake prescription orthotics for mass-produced insoles sold in drugstores. The orthotics we prescribe are made especially for your feet.
Problems that can be alleviated by orthotics include arch and heel pain, discomfort from bunions, and pain caused by diabetes. Sprains and overuse injuries in athletes can also be treated by custom orthotics. With our expertise in foot and ankle function and biomechanics, we are uniquely positioned to prescribe orthotics that meet your individual needs. Don't suffer with foot and ankle pain that won't go away.
Orthotic devices come in many shapes, sizes, and materials and fall into three main categories: those designed to change foot function, those that are primarily protective in nature, and those that combine functional control and protection.
Rigid orthotic devices are designed to control function and are used primarily for walking or dress shoes. They are often composed of a firm material, such as plastic or carbon fiber. Rigid orthotics are made from a mold after a podiatrist takes a plaster cast or other kind of image of the foot. Rigid orthotics control motion in the two major foot joints that lie directly below the ankle joint and may improve or eliminate strains, aches, and pains in the legs, thighs, and lower back.
Soft orthotics are generally used to absorb shock, increase balance, and take pressure off uncomfortable or sore spots. They are usually effective for diabetic, arthritic, and deformed feet. Soft orthotics are typically made up of soft, cushioned materials so that they can be worn against the sole of the foot, extending from the heel past the ball of the foot, including the toes. Like rigid orthotics, soft orthotics are also made from a mold after a podiatrist takes a plaster cast or other kind of image of the foot.
Semi-rigid orthotics provide foot balance for walking or participating in sports. The typical semi-rigid orthotic is made up of layers of soft material, reinforced with more rigid materials. Semi-rigid orthotics are often prescribed for children to treat flatfoot and in-toeing or out-toeing disorders. These orthotics are also used to help athletes mitigate pain while they train and compete.