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Posts for tag: Orthotics

By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
June 20, 2022
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Custom Orthotics   Orthotics  

Turn to a podiatrist to find out more about orthotics and their benefits

If you are dealing with sore, tired, and achy feet you may be wondering whether you should turn to a podiatrist for custom orthotics. Custom or prescription orthotics are far more effective than those over-the-counter, one-size-fits-all orthotics you’ll find at your local drugstore. Luckily, podiatrists craft orthotics to fit your needs and your feet, so they are tailored to you. Here are the types of custom orthotics that are available.

What are orthotics?

Orthotics are in-shoe devices that help to correct structural abnormalities within the foot that may impact how the foot, ankle, leg, and hip function. Prescription orthotics are specially crafted by a foot and ankle specialist to correct issues you’re dealing with, manage symptoms and improve movement overall.

What are the types of custom orthotics?

Orthotics are categorized as accommodative or functional,

Accommodative orthotics

These types of orthotics are most often recommended for those who are dealing with injuries, pain, and other similar problems that may require additional cushioning and support. These orthotics are typically made from a soft, flexible material, making them more about comfort than functionality (even though they may be able to control abnormal movements, as well). Accommodative orthotics are often best for,

  • Calluses and corns
  • Diabetic foot ulcers or diabetic feet
  • Arch support
  • Heel pain
  • Chronic pain

Functional orthotics

This orthotic is made from a semi-rigid or rigid material, making it the ideal option for correcting faulty biomechanics and gait issues within the feet. Functional orthotics can help stabilize the foot and ankle and may be an ideal option for athletes as well as those who are prone to tendonitis, bursitis, hip pain, and shin splints. Of course, if you aren’t sure which type of orthotic is right for you, you should speak with your podiatrist.

What goes into getting orthotics?

Before getting custom orthotics, your podiatrist will need to perform a comprehensive assessment of the foot, ankles, knees, and hips to understand what structural or functional issues you’re dealing with. This examination is straightforward and non-invasive. From there, a plaster cast of your foot will be made to help craft your custom-fitted orthotics. Once your orthotics are ready, you’ll come back into the office to have them fitted.

Most people can benefit from custom orthotics. If you want to find out which type of orthotics are right for you and how they could support your feet, talk with your podiatrist today.

By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
December 06, 2021
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Custom Orthotics   Orthotics  
Custom OrthoticsOur feet are often overworked and underappreciated. They do so much for us and yet we often take them for granted unless they start to cause us issues. Whether you’re looking for ways to prevent foot problems from happening in the first place or you’re already dealing with these issues, there are many reasons people are turning to their podiatrist for custom orthotics.

What are orthotics?

Sometimes known as arch support, custom orthotics give people the freedom to stand and move easier and more comfortably. Some people might opt for over-the-counter orthotics because of convenience; however, over-the-counter orthotics are not crafted uniquely to your feet, which often means that they won’t provide the relief you’re looking for from foot pain and other issues, and may even make problems worse. Instead, consider getting custom orthotics that are designed to correct your specific foot problems, ease symptoms, and make it easier for you to get back to your life.

Here are the types of custom orthotics that podiatrists often provide:

Rigid Orthotics

Rigid orthotics are often made from harder materials such as plastic or carbon fiber and are used to control function. They also help to control motion in the joints of the foot. They are most often used with walking shoes or dress shoes as they help with strains, aches and pains in the legs, thighs, and lower back.

Soft Orthotics

Just like the name states, soft orthotics are made out of more cushioned materials so they can act as shock absorbers, help with balance, and relieve pressure. They also cradle the soles of the foot and support everything from the heel and balls of your feet to the toes. Since soft orthotics help to absorb shock, they can be a good option for athletes and those with active lifestyles.

Semi-Rigid Orthotics

Semi-rigid orthotics can also be a great option for sports players as they provide a good balance. As the name implies, semi-rigid orthotics are made with layers of soft material that are backed by a rigid material. While this type is great for avid walkers and the like, semi-rigid orthotics are also prescribed to treat flatfoot and other foot disorders in children. If you’re planning on running a marathon this year and you’re experiencing foot pain, semi-rigid orthotics might help relieve some of the discomforts you’re feeling while training.

Are you interested in custom orthotics? If so, your podiatrist can chat more about orthotics and how they could benefit your feet based on your foot health, age, activities, and lifestyle.
By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
October 14, 2020
Category: Foot Care
Taking Care of Your FeetWrinkles and back pain aren’t the only issues you may deal with as you get older. You may also notice changes in your feet that can leave you prone to aches, pain, cracked heels and other unpleasant issues. As you get older it’s important that you provide your aging feet with what they need, and sometimes that means consulting a podiatrist for additional care and treatment. Here are some tips to keep your aging feet looking and feeling their best,

Clean Feet Daily

It’s easy for our feet, just like the rest of our bodies, to pick up bacteria and fungus. Washing your feet with soap and water every day can help to remove these germs to prevent infections. Just remember to always dry your feet off thoroughly after bathing to reduce your risk for fungal infections. While you can do this at any time of the night, bathing and washing your feet in the evening could help you relax prior to bedtime.

Keep Feet Moisturized

You may notice that as you get older your skin also gets drier. While staying hydrated will certainly help to keep skin supple and moisturized, it’s also a good idea to apply a moisturizer to your feet to prevent cracking or broken skin (which can lead to infection). Once you’ve applied moisturizer to the feet it’s a good idea to cover the feet with socks made from breathable material such as cotton.

Trim Nails Properly

If you neglect to trim nails regularly you may find that long nails are prone to fungal infections and ingrown toenails. If you are able to trim nails yourself you will want to trim them so they are level with the tips of the toes (any lower and you could risk an ingrown toenail). Always trim nails straight across, never curve the edges of the nails. If you are having trouble trimming your own nails you can turn to a podiatrist for proper foot care.

Wear Appropriate Footwear

With all the changes that occur to your feet as you get older, it’s particularly important that you wear the proper footwear that will provide additional support and cushioning. It’s also important that you have your feet properly measured (best done in the afternoon when feet are at their largest due to swelling) and shoes fitted by a specialist. If you are dealing with blisters, calluses, and sore feet then you’ll want to talk with your podiatrist about getting different shoes or about getting custom orthotics/arch support.

Fungal infections, bunions and ingrown toenails can appear almost instantly, so having a podiatrist that you can turn to for regular care and treatment can provide you with peace of mind. Talk with your podiatrist about how to keep your aging feet feeling young and healthy.
By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
August 27, 2020
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Orthotics  
OrthoticsA healthy body starts with healthy, happy feet. After all, your feet have to do a lot of heavy lifting, providing your body with a sturdy foundation and support to walk, run, and climb stairs. Of course, many people will deal with biomechanical problems in their feet due to flat feet, high arches, or other structural abnormalities. The good news is that something as simple as custom orthotics can provide your feet with the support they need to both prevent and manage foot and leg pain and other problems.

What are orthotics?

These specialized shoe inserts are a little different from the ones you can find at your local drugstore. Orthotics are special, custom-made shoe inserts designed and fabricated by your podiatrist to specifically fit your foot and its unique needs. There are many reasons why a podiatrist may recommend orthotics.

Sometimes orthotics are used to alleviate symptoms and improve common foot, leg, or even back problems, while other times your podiatrist may recommend them to improve the support and health of your feet to prevent problems in the first place.

Do I need orthotics?

Orthotics is just one way to treat foot and leg problems and your doctor may recommend orthotics if you are dealing with,
Osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Leg, hip, or back pain
  • Bursitis
  • Flat feet
  • High arches
  • Tendonitis
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Bunions
  • Diabetes
  • Hammertoes
  • Certain injuries to the foot or ankle
While orthotics are typically not the sole treatment option, your podiatrist may prescribe orthotics along with other treatment options including stretching, pain-relieving medication, ice or heat therapy, and bracing or compression.

Orthotics can help people of all ages and backgrounds, from athletic kids and adults to those who are overweight and seniors. Feet continue to change as we get older, and as aches and pains set in, custom orthotics could be what you need to help make getting around as easy as it once was.

Types of Orthotics

There are many different kinds of materials that can be used to create orthotics. The type of condition you are dealing with will most likely help your podiatrist determine which material to use.

Orthotics range from soft and flexible to hard and rigid. Those with plantar fasciitis or diabetic feet are more likely to benefit from the cushioning and additional support of soft orthotics while athletes and those who often wear dress shoes are more likely to benefit from rigid orthotics.

If you are interested in orthotics and how they could help you, talk with your podiatrist to learn more.
By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
February 27, 2019
Category: Foot Care

Of all the types of foot pain a patient may experience, heel pain is the most common according to the American Podiatric Medical Association. The discomfort can be felt not only on the bottom of the heel, but also in the ankle, lower leg, and under the foot. Don’t allow heel pain to keep you off your feet any longer—seek professional help from a podiatrist at the Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute in Butte and Heel PainBozeman, MT.

The Common Source of Heel Pain
A foot condition called plantar fasciitis, or heel spur syndrome, is the commonly reported cause of heel pain patients. The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that extends from the toe bone to the heel bone. It takes a lot of pressure in the course of a day—especially when you’re wearing shoes that aren’t appropriate for your feet. That pressure leads to inflammation and pain that can make it nearly impossible to walk, run, or even stand in place for a long period of time.

Podiatric Heel Pain Solutions
A podiatrist at Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute in Butte and Bozeman, MT is familiar with why you may be experiencing heel pain, and how it can be eased. These are some of the most common solutions:

- Orthotics and padding designed to support the natural contours of your feet.
- Targeted stretching exercises that flex and stimulate the muscles, providing relief.
- Oral NSAID medications.
- Corticosteroid injections to manage pain.
- Surgical intervention.

Protect Your Heels and Feet
As much time as you may spend on your feet in an average day, it’s easy to forget to take care of them. Prioritize good foot health by adopting these simple foot care habits:

- Keep your custom orthotic inserts inside of your favorite shoes to protect and preserve your natural arch.
- Avoid wearing non-supportive footwear, or shoes that put a strain on your arch.
- Take a few days off and rest your feet. Give your heels a chance to heal.

Help for Your Heels
When you find yourself avoiding walking, running, and participating in your favorite activities because of unbearable heel pain, it’s time to see a podiatrist. Call 406-782-2278 today to schedule a visit with Dr. Dallin Greene or Dr. Nathan Judd at the Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute in Butte or Bozeman, MT.