Custom Foot Orthotics
Orthotics refers to custom-made shoe inserts prescribed by a licensed doctor of podiatric medicine, an osteopathic doctor, or a medical doctor after a medical examination and diagnosis. Orthotics are designed to accommodate or correct an abnormal or irregular walking pattern.
ORTHOTICS – IS THERE A DIFFERENCE?
Accommodative over-the-counter orthotics may provide some cushioning and shock absorption, but generally they will not correct the biomechanical dysfunction that is in the most need of being corrected. Although accommodative orthotics may be cheaper and quicker to produce, only prescription functional orthotics are manufactured and designed to correct biomechanical problems that often are the cause of pain. Prescription orthotics are also manufactured to withstand up to four times the body's weight since this is often equivalent to the force exerted through the feet when we walk or run.
PRESCRIPTION FUNCTIONAL ORTHOTICS
At The Foot Doctor, our orthotics are prescription, custom molded inserts that can be transferred from shoe to shoe. Prescription functional orthotics are designed to assist in the correction of biomechanical problems that affect the feet, ankles, knees, back and other structures as we walk, run or perform other activities. They support the foot and help to restore the proper alignment of the joints and bones within the foot. Many foot problems can be directly attributed to collapsed or fallen arches or other biomechanical faults such as pronation (rolling in and collapsing of the arches when walking) and supination (rolling outward of the ankles and raising of the arch). These problems can be genetic in origin and most patients do not realize there is a problem until various symptoms begin to appear. These symptoms will generally be manifest by pain.
Dr. Gmerek will perform biomechanical exams that often help determine the cause of the problem. Often, pain in associated areas such as the knees, hips or back is caused from improper foot biomechanics.
Orthotics make standing, walking, and running more comfortable and efficient by altering the angles at which the foot strikes the ground. Orthotics placed inside your shoes can absorb shock, improve balance, and take pressure off sore spots. Doctors of podiatric medicine pioneered and are developing more high-tech orthotics.