What are orthotics?
Orthotics are orthopedic devices designed to treat or adjust various biomechanical foot disorders.
While simple, commercial devices, such as heel cushions or shock absorbing insoles for shoes, can be purchased over the counter in drug stores or other retail establishments, the most effective Ottawa orthotics are custom-designed devices specifically crafted to meet the needs of the individual. These custom-tailored orthotics are what we recommend and prescribe at Back to Health.
In our clinic, our custom-made orthotics in Ottawa are designed from the gait analysis software assessment of the feet (see Gait Analysis/ Foot Scan). This information is then transmitted via modem to the Footmaxx laboratory, or the Orthotic Group, where it is further analyzed to evaluate the biomechanical problems of the feet. The Metascan software specifies a prescription for your custom foot orthotics. The orthotics are constructed from materials which allow for thinness while providing strength and durability. The materials will vary depending on the type and style of orthotics ordered. Once the Ottawa orthotics are designed, they are sent to the clinic for an alignment evaluation with the kinesiologist to ensure proper fit and design. The footwear is an integral part of the assessment. Depending on the patient’s needs, shock absorptive accommodations and metatarsal padding may be necessary.
Will the orthotics fit into all of my shoes?
That depends on the orthotics you need, and the types of shoes you typically wear. For example, the Footmaxx allsport orthotic (shown in the picture above) is designed with an athletic shoe in mind, since that type of shoe generally has a fully-removable insole. There is a variety of dress shoes, both men’s and women’s, that have removable insoles, and many of those shoes work well with the allsport orthotic. However, some dress shoes do not have removable insoles, or have a very narrow toe box, so the orthotic has to be more streamlined and thin to fit properly in the shoe. In this case, dress-shoe orthotics are a better choice.
There is a selection of specialty orthotics available for specific sporting activities, such as skiing, running, hockey, basketball, football, tennis, soccer and cycling. There are also orthotics designed with the elderly in mind (such as those designed for arthritic feet), or with a special top coat to accommodate sensitive, diabetic feet.
How much do they cost?
See price list in the paperwork section of the website.
How long do they last?
Orthotics should last one to two years. The orthotics should be reassessed at the one-year point to make sure they are still providing adequate support. The reason for this is that with regular wear and tear, the orthotic will eventually conform to your feet because the materials are only semi-rigid. If you are wearing orthotics that are more than two years old, they are probably not providing enough support.
Types of orthotics
At Back to Health, we prescribe the Footmaxx orthotic range. Please visit Footmaxx’s web site at www.footmaxx.com for details on the types of orthotics available.
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