Orthotics 101

All of your orthotics questions are answered here!

What is an Orthotic?

Orthotics are custom made (unique to you) inserts. They resemble an insole in appearance but are made with additions/modifications that your foot/body requires. 

The fancy name is “biomechanical medical appliance”.

What do orthotics do?

There are many functions of an orthotic:

  1. Orthotics correct foot imbalances
  2. Realign the body in order to reduce pain in certain areas 

When explaining what an orthotic does, Dr. Angela compares an orthotic for the body to  eyeglasses for vision.

“When wearing glasses, the eyes are able to work more optimally. Glasses don’t ‘fix’ the eyes, rather, glasses will provide aid to the eyes. When the glasses are off, the eyes go back to problems focusing. The same goes for an orthotic. It will not fix the feet, but it will aid with correcting imbalances in the foot and decreasing pain in various parts of the body when they are being worn.”

Orthotics help position your foot so the correct muscles are used at the correct time. This minimizes fatigue and allows muscles to be used more efficiently. 

What can orthotics help with?

There are many things that research has shown orthotics can help with, some of which are:

  • Localized foot pain (ie: Morton’s Neuroma, Plantar Fasciitis)
  • Bunions, hammer toes
  • Arch/heel pain (ie: AchillesTendonitis)
  • Leg/knee pain (ie: Runner’s Knee)
  • Hip or back pain (ie: Sacroiliac Pain, Low Back Pain)

Dr. Angela’s approach to orthotics

“My approach to orthotics is ‘less is more’

Dr Angela believes that too many people are prescribed orthotics that do not require them. Or, they are prescribed really rigid orthotics when in fact, a more flexile orthotic would be better over all. 

How do I get orthotics?

Determining if orthotics are required is the first step. This is done with a biomechanical analysis of your gait (how you walk), your foot structure, and of course a conversation about your body and if you are experiencing pain anywhere.

If it is determined that orthotics are required, a 3D mold of your foot is taken and sent off to the lab. Soon after your orthotics will be ready for you. 

If you have further questions give us a call at 403.521.2278 or email us at info@cadencesportstherapy.com

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