podiatrist taking cast of foot for custom orthoticIf you are experiencing foot pain and are looking for relief, a custom orthotic may be your solution. An orthotic is an insert worn in the shoe that can help with pain and discomfort. A podiatrist can prescribe a custom orthotic that can take pressure off specific areas of your foot and help you enjoy your daily activities without pain.

Common Signs That You Need Custom Orthotics

Anyone can benefit from wearing a custom orthotic in their shoe. If you stand on your feet for an extended period of time, notice that your shoes are wearing out faster in certain parts than others, or have pain in your legs, hips, or back, a custom orthotic may be an ideal solution.

If you have any of the following conditions, a custom orthotic may be an option to consider:

  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Arthritis
  • Bunions
  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Diabetes
  • High or flat arches
  • Plantar fasciitis

Some signs that you need an orthotic are:

  • Foot pain
  • Swelling
  • Heel pain
  • Inability to keep your balance
  • Injury on a lower limb
  • Foot complications from diabetes

Custom Orthotics vs. Over-the-Counter Inserts

A custom orthotic from a podiatrist is made to your exact foot specifications and designed to address any foot problems you may be experiencing. An over-the-counter insert that you can purchase at a pharmacy, online, or retail store cannot fit your foot precisely and may not provide the support you need.

Some benefits of a custom orthotic over an over-the-counter insert are:

  • Custom orthotics are constructed from high-quality materials that can last for a long time, whereas an over-the-counter insert is made from inexpensive materials that wear out quickly.
  • Custom orthotics can be made to address your specific foot problems and specifications. An over-the-counter insert is premade and cannot be tailored to your personal needs.
  • Insurance often covers the cost of a custom orthotic.

Types of Custom Orthotics

If you are experiencing pain in your feet that interferes with your daily activity, contact a podiatrist to be evaluated for custom orthotics. A podiatrist will do the following to determine what type of orthotic will work best for your needs:

  • Examine your feet and analyze how you walk
  • Assess the movement of your legs and feet
  • Review your concerns and feet issues
  • Do three-dimensional imaging and X-rays of your feet and take measurements

A podiatrist will determine if custom orthotics will work for your foot problems and decide what type will be best for your specific needs. The two types of orthotics that are commonly prescribed are:

  • Accommodative. An accommodative orthotic is used to provide cushioning and support. They are often prescribed for those with diabetic foot ulcers or other issues with the sole of the foot. This type of orthotic is made from a softer material that is flexible.
  • Functional. A functional orthotic is used to treat foot pain that is caused by abnormal motion. They are often prescribed for an injury such as tendonitis. Functional orthotics are made from a semi-rigid material such as plastic or carbon fiber.

Since orthotics are custom made to your exact foot needs, they can range in size, shape, and where they will be placed inside your shoe. Orthotics can be made as a full-shoe insert, heel cup, or arch support. The type of shoe you plan on wearing the orthotic in will also determine what type you may need. An orthotic for a dress shoe may be different than one worn in an athletic shoe.

Contact an Experienced Podiatrist

If you are experiencing pain in your feet and need custom orthotics, contact us today for help. We can help determine what type of custom orthotics will work best to meet your needs and personal condition. Call our Hermiston, Oregon office today at 541-567-8750 or fill out our convenient contact form online to set up an appointment with one of our foot specialists.