Visit our facility in downtown Toronto to determine if custom orthotics are right for you. Custom orthotics are inserts for your shoes that have been shaped and designed specifically for your feet. They work to correct the alignment of bones in your feet in order to improve the muscle imbalances within your feet and lower limb. With each step you take, your custom-made orthotics will control your feet and keep them in a neutral position in order to minimize the stress that is transmitted through the joints of your feet, ankles, knees, hips, pelvis and spine. Ask your therapist if orthotics may be a solution for you.
What are Custom Orthotics?
Custom Orthotics are devices that are made specifically for your feet in order to optimize the alignment of your foot and ankle. Custom Orthotics help to improve efficiency and minimize shock absorption through the lower extremity, pelvis and spine. Custom-made orthotics reduce the stress and strain on your body by placing your feet in the most optimal position throughout the full gait cycle. Your feet and their alignment are critical as they are the first point of contact between you and the environment as you move around. If you have faulty placement of your feet, then increased energy will be required to balance, weight bear and move forward through weight transfer and you will have a higher risk of injury.
How Are Custom Orthotics Made?
Your health practitioner will complete a detailed assessment of your gait and foot position in both a static and dynamic state. This means they will be observing your feet as you stand and as you walk. They will be looking for asymmetries and abnormalities in your feet and lower extremity. This information will be combined with a precise imprint of your feet and sent off to a lab where they will make your orthotics. Your therapist may also ask the lab to put special additions to your orthotics based on your area of pain, the wear patterns in your shoes and the skin changes on your feet. Your orthotics can be made to fit into your running shoes, dress shoes, flats, high heels or a combination of different shoes. Your custom orthotics will arrive back at the clinic within a week or two and at that time your therapist will teach you how to slowly adjust to them and how to wear them correctly.
Who Needs Custom Orthotics?
Not everyone will benefit from custom orthotics! It is important that everyone understands this and receives a proper assessment before deciding to invest in custom-made orthotics. Custom orthotics work best and will have the largest impact on your condition when your feet are the “driver” of your condition. Failed load transfer through your feet due to poor alignment can influence many joints above such as your knees, hips, pelvis, low back and spine however this is not always a direct cause and effect relationship. There are many situations when other regions of your body are the root of the issue and can trickle down to influence the alignment of your feet. This means that if you have knee pain that is solely the result of weak muscles in your hip then wearing custom orthotics to control your feet will not likely help. However, if the increased mobility of your foot is “driving” or causing the weakness in your hip, then controlling the alignment of your feet will improve the your hip strength and ultimately make your knee feel better. Also, it is important to note that if you are suffering from foot pain, you may think that orthotics are your only option. Once again, it is important to determine what is “driving” your foot pain. Perhaps your low back condition is causing you to limp and place excessive load through your right lower limb and this is irritating your plantar fascia (the bottom aspect of your foot). If this is the case, it is important to direct treatment to your low back and wait and see whether orthotics are really necessary. Your physiotherapist and/or chiropractor will be able to assess your body globally to help determine if custom orthotics are right for you.
Orthotics can help you if you have
Any of the following conditions and your feet have been deemed to be the “driver” or the root cause of your problem.
- Metatarsalgia or other foot pain
- Plantar fasciitis
- Morton’s Neuroma
- Flat feet
- High arches
- Knee pain
- Hip pain
- Low back pain
- SIJ dysfunction
- Degenerative Disc Disease
- Osteoarthritis in the knees, hips, pelvis or low back
- Patellofemoral pain syndrome
- Femoral acetabular impingment
- Iliotibial band friction syndrome
- Bursitis in the ankle, knee or hip
- Chronic ankle sprains
- Piriformis syndrome
- Achilles tendonopathy
- Patellar tendonopathy
- Snapping Psoas
- Gluteal tendonopathy
- Hamstring tendonopathy
- Recurrent Calf Strains
- And More…
Custom orthotics are covered by most extended health plans. It is important that you call your insurance provider to determine who is approved to “prescribe” the orthotics and who is approved to “dispense” the orthotics according to your plan. Feel free to call us today for more information or to request a consultation. We will gladly submit a pre-determination request to your insurance company to see if you will be covered for the full or partial cost of your custom orthotics with your plan.