What Are Orthotics?
A custom orthotic is a device designed to align the foot and ankle into the most anatomically efficient position. They look like insoles, but are biomechanical medical appliances that are custom made to correct your specific foot imbalance. Custom orthotics work on your feet much like glasses work on your eyes- they reduce stress and strain on your body by bringing your feet back into proper alignment. The plastic body of the custom orthotic helps to re-align the foot by redirecting and reducing certain motion that takes place during the gait cycle. Custom orthotics fit into your shoes as comfortably as an insole- and they have the advantage of having been made from precise imprints of your feet.
Purpose of Custom Orthotics
Custom-made orthotics have been shown to help alleviate and relieve pain caused by the following common foot conditions:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Arch pain
- Diabetes-related pain
- Hammer toe
- Corns & Calluses
In addition to relieving pain and reducing inflammation, custom orthotics help control alignment and function of the foot. This helps treat and prevent injuries caused by sharp or excessive movement during physical activity. Custom orthotics also help to make activities like running and walking more efficient by improving the structure of the foot.
How Do Custom Orthotics Work?
The root cause of most foot problems can be attributed to poor foot structure. Even the smallest misalignment in the foot can cause significant pain or discomfort. Misalignment in the foot usually causes foot conditions like bunions, corns, hammer toe, etc. If you suffer from these conditions, custom-made orthotics are recommended to pad and protect the foot.
Orthotics function to not only support the arch, but also realign the structures of the foot. By doing so, custom orthotics improve the structure of the foot and help prevent bone misalignment, as well as tendon and ligament fatigue. As your foot strikes the ground, orthotics within the shoe gently direct the structure into the correct position so as to reduce pain and stop inflammation.
How Are Orthotics Made?
Yale Podiatry Group uses a digital casting device that allows our doctors to analyze patient biomechanics and order custom orthotic products. 4096 sensors and a scan rate of 300 frames per second. This technology is the industry leader in dynamic scanning capabilities. What does this mean for you? A new, in-depth method of assessing your gait cycle with a dynamic scan gives your doctors access to a wealth of information that cannot be obtained with the naked eye. Over a million points of data are recorded, tracking minor flaws in your biomechanic and shedding light on issues that if left untreated, could develop into painful conditions over time. This provides our practitioners a comprehensive biomechanical analysis for each patient as well as clear, concise images to assess and articulate the need for orthotic therapy.