What you need to know about Orthotics from your Upland and Claremont Physical Therapist.
The term “orthotics” is Greek and it means “to straighten or align”.
Foot orthotics are external devices placed in the shoes.
They do several things: control motion of the foot bones, provide support by stabilizing the foot, reduce pain by transferring the weight load to other areas, and correct deformities.
What are they used for?
They correct biomechanical problems: foot and heel pain, flat feet, high arches, plantar fasciitis, hip or knee pain, back pain.
Do I need a doctor’s referral to get orthotics?
Most insurances do not pay for orthotics. Call your plan and ask if they cover orthotics.
Are they expensive?
They can be. Always be sure to ask about the price before you order. There is usually a fee for the device AND a fee for the measuring and actual mold that is taken.
How are they made?
Different ways. The off-the-shelf versions are NOT made for your foot. These are the least expensive and the least effective, although they can provide some relief. The custom-made devices are made specifically to your foot’s dimensions.
How do you do that?
After the evaluation and measurements are done, the therapist uses a plaster casting material on the bottom of your foot. The foot is held in proper position as the plaster dries. Once the foot mold is removed, it is sent to the lab and your orthotics are made to specifically fit your foot.
Must I wear them all the time?
Most people do. Although, there are some who prefer to wear them only when participating in a demanding physical activity.
Will they fit in any shoe?
Depends on the shoe. If the inner sole is removable, there is a good chance they will fit. For women, they usually do not fit in a dress shoe or high heeled shoes. Sometimes, you need to go up ½ size when you purchase new shoes. They do not fit in sandals or with flip-flops.