How Do Orthotics Work to Improve Your Life?
Most people will suffer from foot pain at some point in their lives. Some studies estimate that 77% of Americans have experienced foot pain. Of those who live with chronic foot pain, 83% say this pain affects their activities of daily living. Orthotics can help many of these people alleviate their pain.
How do orthotics work?
Orthotics are shoe inserts that can help correct an irregular or abnormal walking pattern. They are recommended when muscles, ligaments, joints, tendons, or bones are not functioning correctly and causing pain. Orthotics work by slightly changing the angle at which the foot contacts the walking surface. In many circumstances, they can be an effective approach to alleviating foot pain.
How are orthotics made?
True orthotics are much more than arch supports. There are three different types of orthotics; rigid, soft, and semi-rigid.
- Rigid orthotics are manufactured from a firm material such as carbon fiber or plastic. These orthotics are made from a mold of your own foot. They generally do not wear out or break.
- Soft orthotics are made from compressible materials and are molded to your foot as you wear them. These orthotics help take pressure off sore areas of your foot, absorb shock as you walk or run, and increase balance.
- Semi-rigid orthotics consist of layers of flexible materials reinforced with more rigid materials. These orthotics provide balance as well as allow the foot to perform more effectively.
Benefits of wearing orthotics
If you are wondering, “Do orthotics work?” the answer is, “Yes!” There are many benefits to wearing orthotics including:
- Alleviating foot, low back, ankle, and leg pain
- Improving balance
- Provide adequate arch support
- Correcting alignments of the foot and leg
- Distributing pressure and absorbing shock
- Allowing you to participate in activities of daily living
Orthotics let your feet function properly, and this affects many other areas of your body.
Where do I get orthotics?
Orthotics can be purchased over-the-counter or through a specialist. If you are experiencing a mild foot problem and are of average height and weight, these may be an option for you. Over-the-counter orthotics are available at drug stores or running stores. If your pain or alignment problem does not improve, you may need to seea foot and ankle specialist such as Brad Dresher, MD or G. Alex Simpson, DO two of Colorado Springs’ Top Orthopedic Doctors, for further assessment. At Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group, our professionals can help you find the right orthotics in Colorado Springs to address any lower extremity pain you may be experiencing.