How Custom Orthotics Improve Your Overall Health

If you’re moderately active and take good care of your feet, you can expect them to carry you an impressive 75,000 miles in your first five decades of life, and many more miles as the years go on. 

With 28 bones, 33 joints, and an intricate network of more than 100 muscles, ligaments, and tendons, your foot-ankle complex is incredibly strong, stable, and resilient. But for your feet to support you, you’ve got to support your feet

For some people, wearing well-fitting shoes with good arch support is all it takes to maintain healthy feet; for others, custom orthotics are just as essential for keeping feet balanced and ready to go the distance. 

Custom orthotics explained 

Custom foot orthotics are tailor-made shoe inserts designed to provide functional support and comfort with every step you take. While they may resemble the pre-packaged insoles and arch supports available at your nearest big-box retailer, custom orthotics are precision-crafted just for you based on your biomechanical needs. 

By matching the contours of your foot and incorporating materials that support and respond to the way you move, custom orthotics reinforce and cushion your feet in just the right places. Your unique foot structure and pathology determines which type of orthotics are best for you:

Functional orthotics 

Made from rigid or semi-rigid materials like plastic or graphite, functional orthotics are designed to control abnormal foot motion, correct improper foot mechanics, or resolve painful repetitive stress injuries like tendonitis.

Accommodative orthotics 

Made of softer materials meant to provide extra cushion and support, accommodative orthotics can help with a wide range of uncomfortable foot conditions, including diabetic foot ulcers and painful calluses.  

Custom orthotics benefits 

Your body is like one long kinetic chain of motion that starts with your feet. If any of the joints, bones, tendons, ligaments, or muscles in your feet aren’t in their optimal functional position, the resulting pain, discomfort, and fatigue can travel up the kinetic chain and affect other areas of your body. 

Wearing custom orthotics that address your functional and biomechanical foot deficiencies can lead to a variety of significant health benefits, including:

Restored mobility

When a functional disorder or biomechanical condition makes walking difficult, uncomfortable, or downright painful, an active lifestyle can fall by the wayside. Custom orthotics are designed to give you the kind of personalized anatomical support that provides instant comfort and pain relief so you can walk, run, dance, and jump with confidence. 

Increased comfort

Whether you have flat feet, high arches, bunions, gout, or chronic heel pain, custom orthotics are designed to provide the kind of all-day comfort you just can’t get from store-bought inserts or even most shoes — from the moment you start wearing them, your feet feel less stressed and more stable. And when your feet are comfortable, your body’s more comfortable, too. 

Improved posture

Wearing the wrong shoes doesn’t simply increase your risk of foot problems — it also boosts your chances of developing the kind of poor biomechanics that can give rise to poor posture, an altered gait, and chronic ankle, knee, hip, or back problems. 

By stabilizing your feet and supporting your body’s natural alignment from the ground up, custom orthotics help correct the “kink” in the kinetic chain caused by faulty foot mechanics. 

Lasting pain relief

Unsupportive or ill-fitting shoes play a central part in most cases of foot pain; many common foot problems, ranging from plantar fasciitis and neuromas to collapsed arches and bunions, are either caused by or exacerbated by wearing the wrong shoes. 

Custom orthotics can help realign your feet into a healthier functional pattern that promotes healing, relieves pain, and takes the strain and pressure off your ankles, legs, hips, and back.  

Advanced custom orthotics 

Here at Bay Area Foot Care, we use advanced 3D digital scanning technology to ensure your custom orthotics are perfectly tailored to your feet and your symptoms.

Before we scan your feet, however, we perform a comprehensive evaluation of your feet, ankles, and legs. Then we discuss your symptoms and health history, analyze your gait, and evaluate the wear patterns on your shoes. To ensure your orthotics are as precise as possible, we take a series of 3D digital images that map the surface, contours, and dimensions of each foot. 

From these images, we can develop custom orthotics to fit your everyday footwear, another pair for your favorite dress shoes, and another pair for your sports or athletic shoes. Wearing your custom orthotics all the time can give you the kind of support your feet need to carry you beyond those first 75,000 miles with ease.

If you have chronic foot pain, don’t wait another day — call your nearest Bay Area Foot Care office today, or click online to schedule an appointment with one of our orthotics experts at any time. 

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