Q: What are Orthotics? A: Orthotics are a prescribed style of semi-flexible, custom made foot appliance or device, which are worn in shoes. The same custom support and biomechanical correction is also available in a shoe and a sandal. Orthotics are uniquely designed for each individuals postural problems, provide support for the three arches of your feet, provide proprioceptive feedback to the muscles of your lower limb and help improve total body wellness. The orthotics are designed to allow you to move them between different shoes to maximize your wear and use. However if your footwear styles vary tremendously you made need more than one pair of orthotics.
Q: What do they do? A: Orthotics help your feet to maintain their structural and functional balance as you stand, walk or run. Your feet are the foundation of your body, and they serve you in three important ways: they support your body whenever you stand, walk, or run: they assist you in moving from one place to another; and they help protect your spine, bones and soft tissues from damaging shock stress as you move. Any weakness or unstable positioning in your feet can contribute to postural problems in the rest of your body. Orthotics help to keep your feet in a stable position throughout the day. For best results, you should wear your orthotics at least 80% of the time.
Q: How are Orthotics made? A: Your initial appointment will take 45 minutes. Please bring the footwear with you that you wear most often to your appointment. They provide Dr. Patterson with valuable information. You will be asked to stand and sit and walk while your feet and your gait are examined. The doctor will examine your feet carefully as well as your posture and your footwear.
You will be asked to stand on and walk across a special pressure plate (Gaitscan)and finally you will step into a foam casting kit, which will capture the exact impression of your feet in their position of function. The doctor will determine the style(s) of orthotics appropriate for you, and the impressions with detailed exam results are sent to a laboratory where the orthotics will be created to correct any imbalances found. They use the latest state of the art equipment, which no one practitioner could afford, to custom craft your orthotics. After the orthotics arrive at the clinic, they will be dispensed to you. At this time, the doctor will show you how to wear them properly and how to take care of them.
Q: How long does it take to make my orthotics? A: It will take approximately 2 to 3 weeks for us to get your orthotics back from the lab after your initial appointment. There are times when the order can be rushed for an additional cost.
Q: I only wear sandals? What are my options? A: Custom orthotic beds can be built into a variety of sandals. The orthotic labs that we use both carry a variety of sandals for both men and women that have a removable sandal bed. There are sports sandals, dress sandals, casual sandals etc. They range from Naot, to Clarks and even Birkenstocks.
Q: How do I know if I have coverage for custom foot orthotics? A: Please see the form, earlier on this page. Download the form and check with your insurance company to find out if you have coverage for custom foot orthotics.
Q: My child needs orthotics, but they may outgrow them before they outwear them. What can I do? A: Most of the growth in a child's foot happens distal to the actual orthotic. It is rare for a child to outgrow an orthotic before it would be time to replace it. However, there are policies in place that will allow another pair to be made at no additional cost, in the rare event that they outgrow them before they are due to be replaced.
Q: How much do they cost? A: Custom foot orthotics cost $450 at KWFC. As they are a medical device, there is no tax (zero HST rated) on custom foot orthotics . Some clinics will charge upwards of $600 to $650 per pair. The range of prices can be reflective of turn around time or having an onsite lab. As we use an offsite laboratory, we pass the savings onto the patient.
Q: What’s wrong with a pair of those off-the-rack shoe inserts? A: No one else’s feet are exactly like yours. Each pair of custom orthotics is created for the individual, supports all three arches of your feet, and is designed specifically to help your spinal adjustments to “hold” better. “Off-the-rack” shoe inserts are mass-produced and cannot provide the specific level of support you may need to keep your feet in their proper structural positions.
Q: Are my feet in good shape? A: Possibly not. Your feet have three crucial functions: they support your body; they help you to move; and they help protect your bones and soft tissues from damaging shock stress. Performing these three strenuous tasks day after day often leads to some type of foot/and or body problem. Being overweight, having structural defects in the feet, or having injuries- all of these factors can contribute to additional foot and body stress. By the age of 20, nearly 80% of us have some kind of foot problem, and by age forty almost everyone does.
Q: Since my feet don’t hurt, I don’t have any real problem with them right? A: Wrong. Even if your feet don’t hurt, a weakened foundation may seriously affect the rest of your body. When a small problem develops in your feet, the subtle change in the way you walk will cause a chain reaction of events leading to changes in your posture and walking mechanics. These changes put stress at joints higher up in your body, and lead to more serious problems. If you are currently having knee, hip, low back or neck pain, your feet may not be supporting joints, bones or soft tissues above the ankles properly.
Q: How can my chiropractor help me? A: Depending upon your specific condition, Dr. Patterson will provide a conservative (non-surgical) treatment program to help you feel and function better. This made include orthotics and adjustments to the foot to stabilize your postural foundation and help relieve related stress/pain to the rest of your body. Please note, that you don't have to be a chiropractic patient to come into our clinic for custom foot orthotics. All patients are welcome.
Q: How would I know if I had a problem that could be helped by orthotics? Take the Test If you agree with any of the statements below, ask Dr. Patterson how orthotics can help you feel better from the ground up!
1. My feet are sore on a regular basis 2. I spend a good portion of my day standing or walking on hard surfaces 3. I play a sport regularly (tennis, golf, soccer, basketball, etc.) 4. Standing, walking or running gives me joint pain (ankles, knees, hip or back, even neck) 5. I am over 40 years old 6. I have visible foot problems (bunions, fallen arches, corns, etc.) 7. One of my legs is shorter than the other 8. I have knock-knees or bow-legs 9. My shoes wear out quickly or unevenly 10. My feet “toe out” when I walk 11. My parents had foot related problems
A thorough health history, exam of your footwear, a biomechanical analysis as well as a computerized gait analysis are the next steps in determining if custom orthotics are right for you.
Q: What is a Computerized Gait Analysis?
This is a process whereby you are asked to stand in your bare feet and walk across a highly specialized computerized plate that takes measurements of your gait (how you walk) in comparison to normal. It provides invaluable data on how you distribute the weight between your two feet as well as the pressure and timing on your feet as you walk. The 2-3 and 3-D data as well as the analysis summary help to evaluate foot function and determine if the symptoms that you are experiencing are related to faulty foot mechanics.
At this office we use the latest and most advanced gait analysis technology available. It is called a TOG Gaitscan. GaitScan™ has an industry high 4096 sensors and scans at an industry high 125Hz (scans per second).
Did you know that there are many different styles and types of orthotics depending on the footwear that you use most often, the types of activities you participate in, your age, your weight and more? There are many stylish shoes and sandals that can also be customized with built in orthotics.
1. 25% of the bones in your body are in your feet 2. The average person takes 8,000 to 10,000 steps per day 3. The average person will walk over 100,000 miles in their lifetime, or more than 4 trips around the world 4. Women have four times as many foot problems as men 5. More than 75% of people will experience foot problems in their lifetime 6. When you are running, the pressure on your feet can be three or four times your body weight.