Orthotic Therapy

What is Orthotic Therapy?

It does not take an expert to realise there is something seriously wrong with the way this child walks! An 'orthotic' is a device designed to restore your natural foot function and gait (walking) cycle. Many 'biomechanical' complaints such as heel pain, knee pain and lower back pain are caused by poor foot function. Orthotics re-align the foot and ankle bones to their neutral position, thereby restoring natural foot function. In turn this helps alleviate stresses in other parts of the body that try to compensate.

Pronation animation If you look at the animation you can imagine the stresses on the ankle and foot in this 14 year old child.

In addition, orthotics distribute weight more evenly through the foot, taking pressure of sore spots (e.g. the ball of the foot, corns in between toes, bunions etc) and they can be tailored to provide shock absorption.

Orthotics typically benefit people with foot pain or discomfort due to walking imbalance (biomechanical complaint). Imbalances such as Flat feet, heel pain, knee pain and shin pain are known to cause pain and discomfort.

Orthotics are particularly beneficial for the following people:

People who stand or walk all day will benefit from orthotics
If you suffer from pain during any form of sporting exercise then orthotics can reduce the pain associated with your condition
For overweight individuals, orthotics will help to counteract the extra stress being placed on the feet

The most common conditions treated with orthotics are:

Metatarsalgia, Plantar Fasciitis (Arch Pain), Heel Spurs & Heel Pain
Achilles Tendonitis Sesamoiditis Ankle Sprains
Flat Feet Mortens Neuroma Tendonitis (shin splints)
Bunions Knee Pain Thigh & Lower Back Pain

Orthotics vary widely in cost, a simple over the counter modified footbed would cost between £30-£50, semi custom heat mouldable orthotics cost about £70 and full custom cast insoles typically cost between £150-£165. The type of orthotic will depend on your footware type, the nature of the problem being treated and the degree of gait correction required.