Orthotics are custom made shoe inserts designed to treat biomechanical foot disorders. Poor foot biomechanics may lead to foot, ankle, knee, hip and low back pain. Orthotics may be simple and generic devices which can be bought ‘over the counter’ in stores or ordered at our clinic. The best orthotics, however, are custom made orthotics specifically designed to meet the needs of a particular individual. This is done by using the high tech computerized gaitscan to assess an individuals foot in neutral and during the walking/running phase, along with the doctors physical and orthopedic examination. The prescription is then sent to The Orthotic Group (TOG) in Canada to make the customised prescription orthotics.
Overpronation and Oversupination are the 2 major types of biomechanical foot disorders which can lead to several different injuries.
Overpronation is often associated with flat feet or low arches. Overpronators may suffer from a number of overuse syndromes:
- plantar fasciitis – bunions
- low back pain – patellar (kneecap) tendonitis
- Achilles tendonitis – illiotibial band syndrome
- Metatarsalgia – patellofemoral syndrome
- Shin splints
Oversupinators is often associated with high, rigid arches. They suffer from problems related to poor shock absorption and are at greater risk for developing osteoarthritis at the major weight bearing joints. They also may experience low back, knee, heel and hip pain.
With either overpronation or oversupination, the wrong muscles contract or they contract out of normal/critical sequence. Your muscles and tendons eventually fatigue and breakdown, suffering microscopic tears. This triggers inflammation leading to swelling, pain and scarring in these tissues. As well, your joints may suffer excess wear and tear leading to inflammation and degeneration. Consequently, pain and dysfunction may arise in your feet, ankles, legs, knees, thighs, hips, low back and further up the chain.
Treatment for any of the above conditions includes reducing inflammation, strengthening and stretching the involved muscles and installing proper joint mobility. In addition custom made orthotics can play an integral role in the overall treatment of many problems caused by ankle and foot dysfunction and more importantly, prevent re-occurences.
Call us today at 026 42116 for your computerized gaitscan analysis to assess if orthotics may be beneficial for you!