Orthotics for Foot Pain

Foot pain is a common complaint; heel pain, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, calluses, corns or bunions, osteoarthritis,arthritis and pain in the arch of the foot are some common ailments. Foot pain may be caused by a variety of structural issues, conditions or trauma. Poor biomechanical alignment of the skeletal structure if most frequently the cause and can be exasperated by being overweight, spending long durations on your feet and participating in high impact sports. Other conditions that are frequently linked to a biomechanical misalignment are shin splints, knee pain, lower back pain, and leg aches.  These problems may seem to appear suddenly but are frequently created slowly over time.

Other foot pains are injuries caused by trauma, where the damage may occur in a single moment or over time. Some examples are ligament sprains, muscle strains, bruises, tendonitis and fractures.  A sprain is caused by a damaged ligament, while tendonitis is an injury to the tendon that attaches to the back of the heal. Injury to the bone, or fractures can occur in a single isolated incident or as a stress fracture, which is caused by a repetitive impact like running.

Orthotics or “functional foot orthoses” are shoe inserts that are created to correct the incorrect walking pattern and foot strike that most of us have naturally.  The idea is that by changing the angle at which the foot lies within your shoe these slight abnormalities are corrected allowing your body to function at optimal levels, therefore placing less stress on the body and allowing it to absorb shock more effectively. Under or over pronation, flat feet, exceptionally high or low arches are problems linked to poor biomechanical alignment that can be corrected with the right orthotic.  Orthotics can also provide some foot pain relief for those suffering from a neuroma geriatric or diabetic foot problem.

Custom orthotics are created from an impression of your foot taken with the sub-talar joint in the neutral position. The orthotic is then designed so that when your foot strikes the ground it can pronate (roll inward) exactly four degrees.  Depending on the structure of your foot and your current foot strike a custom orthotic for you may be designed to increase or decrease the degree that your foot pronates.

Custom orthotics have been used for years to alleviate foot pain for a variety of professionals, athletes and people of varying physical condition.  Traditionally professionals like the doctors and nurses of Munson Medical Center of Traverse City are particularly susceptible to foot pain from hours spent walking on hard floors. Retail salespeople also commonly suffer from foot pain due to long hours on their feet. Overweight individuals are at an increased risk of having problems due to the added impact on their frame as well as runners who continually place added stress on their frame.

If you are interested in finding out how orthotics can alleviate your foot pain an experienced member of the Teter Orthotics and Prosthetics team is here to help.

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Alma, Alpena, Big Rapids, Cadillac, Charlotte, Cheyboygan, Fremont, Gaylord, Grand Rapids, Grayling, Greenville, Houghton Lake, Kalamazoo, Ludington, Manistee, Mt. Pleasant, Muskegon, Petoskey, Sault Ste. Marie, St. Ignace, Traverse City