Foot Orthoses – Therapeutic Footwear
Many foot problems are caused by ill-fitting shoes, so your podiatrist might recommend proper-fitting shoes to easily remedy your pain! Custom orthotics are medical devices prescribed by a podiatrist and include shoe inserts that support and align the foot and lower extremities. Orthotics are helpful and great non-surgical options for treating flexible flatfoot, heel pain, tired feet, pediatric flatfoot, and posterior tibial tendon dysfunction (PTTD).
In addition to seeing your podiatrist about custom orthotics, it is also important to inspect your feet every day and let him/her know if you have a foot injury, notice any changes to your skin or nails, or have pain when walking. If you have diabetes, make sure you are taking care of your diabetes and your blood glucose levels are in your target range, and you are keeping active. It is also important to wear shoes and socks at all times so your feet are protected, as shoes will not only comfort your feet but safeguard them from hot and cold temperatures.
Orthotics also help to comfort patients who suffer from arthritis and osteoarthritis. Arthritis is a general term for a group of more than 100 diseases and means joint inflammation. When it affects the foot and/or ankle, it can produce swelling and pain, and may eventually result in deformity, loss of joint function and decreased mobility.
The most common form of foot and ankle arthritis is osteoarthritis, which is the breakdown and eventual loss of cartilage in one or more joints. It can appear at various joints throughout the body, and, in the foot/ankle, is most commonly found in the big toe, midfoot and ankle. Osteoarthritis is most commonly caused by wear and tear or an injury, but can also develop as a result of abnormal foot mechanics, such as flat feet or high arches.
To help relieve symptoms, your podiatrist will opt for non-surgical approaches including oral medications, orthotic devices, bracing, physical therapy, or more. If these options don’t provide relief, surgery might be the only option to decrease pain and improve function.
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