Orthotics

What are Orthotics?

Orthotics can sometimes be called arch supports, shoe inserts or insoles. Usually, they are made to a prescription designed by your podiatrist. They improve foot function, reduced wear and tear of joints, and relieve painful feet and lower limbs. Orthotics can be used for short term pain relief or long-term for correction of a bio-mechanical problem.

What are they for?

Orthotics are used to correct your foot alignment and improve your foot function. Did you know that one quarter of all the bones in your body are in your feet and these bones are impacted by around 2.5million kilograms each day? You can imagine the daily ponding! It’s not surprising that 70% of Australians seek treatment and advice for foot, ankle and knee pain. Orthotics realign your feet to work more efficiently. 

Common painful foot and lower limb problems that may benefit from prescription orthotics:

  • Plantar fasciitis (heel spur)
  • Sever’s disease 
  • Growing pains
  • Flat feet
  • Morton’s neuroma
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Metatarsalgia (stone bruise injury)
  • Tibial stress syndrome (shin splints
  • Anterior knee pain
  • Lower back pain

Who should wear orthotics?

Orthotics prescribed by your podiatrist are safe for anyone at any age. Toddlers, teenagers, adults and older folk may all need orthotics at some time. Depending on your foot problem, you may need orthotics temporarily or you may need to wear orthotics for most activities long term. We often prescribe orthotics to:  

  • Children and teenagers who are experiencing growth spurts or periods of rapid developmental change. 
  • Children, teenagers or adults participating in high impact sports or exercise.  
  • People working inactive work environments such as standing on your feet all day, walking, carrying, climbing ladders or stairs.
  • Women who are experiencing hormonal changes during pregnancy and menopause.
  • People whose foot problems become more painful with age. Orthotics are helpful for maintaining comfortable joint movement.  

How do they work?

Orthotics basically realign and correct your foot function or biomechanics by providing support designed specifically for your foot type, gait pattern and activity level. By gently rearranging your foot function, orthotics protect your feet from daily wear and tear, preventing overuse injury and pain. 

With computer gait analysis and digital scanning for prescription orthotics we can help restore optimum function, reduce your risk of injury and keep you performing at your peak. Then you have healthy, pain free feet so you can get on with all the things in life you love! 

What types of orthotics are there?

Pre-formed insoles can be helpful for temporary and short-term relief of mild foot pain. For more complicated bio-mechanical problems a detailed examination and prescription orthotics are best for durability, precision and value.

For very active people who regularly play sport or run, we recommend a second pair of orthotics specifically for high impact activity.

Your podiatrist will assess your foot function and gait pattern, then discuss your usual activities, sports and exercise routine. Prescription orthotics will be designed specially to suit your feet, your activities and your footwear.

What Insoles Work Best?

What Type of Insole?What are they made of?How long will they last?How effective are they?
Thin flat ‘cushion’ insolesOpen cell foam, closed cell foam or silicon gelOpen cell foam collapses in less than 1 month. Closed cell & silicone 12 monthsLimited effectiveness For short term comfort only
Contoured preformed off the shelfClosed cell foam or plasticLight materials fatigue and collapse after 6-12 monthsIf fit is good, useful for temporary relief of minor problems
Prescription orthoticsHigh density polypropylene, EVA or carbon fibre. Choice dependant on your foot type and activity level2-5 years depending on activity level. Children and teenagers may need replacement orthotics more frequently during periods of rapid growthHighly effective prescription correction of foot alignment and function. Cushioning added to prescribed requirements. Repairable and replaceable. Guaranteed

Will I Need Special Shoes?

Prescription orthotics work well in joggers. However, many shoes available today are designed to accommodate orthotics, so you can benefit from wearing your orthotics for most activities.

When Will My Orthotics Need To Be Replaced?

Your prescription orthotics become worn over time. Just like shoes, orthotics are under enormous mechanical stress every day. High impact activities such as sport will increase the wear and tear on your orthotics.

Some reasons your orthotics may need repair or replacement include:

  • Return of pain or discomfort
  • Change of work, activity level or sport
  • Worn / torn covers
  • New pain or discomfort
  • Feet have grown and orthotics are now too small

To make sure your orthotics are performing well and are not worn, too small, too flexible or fatigued, you should have your orthotics checked every year. Small repairs may extend the life and performance of your orthotics and keep you comfortable and pain free.

Orthotics have an expected useful life of one to two years for children and two to three years for adults, depending on your orthotic type and your level of physical activity.

Book an Appointment

Please call 08-9319-3030 or email: [email protected]. Alternatively, you can book an appointment online using the form below.

 

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