The Ultimate Guide to Custom Orthotics
Are you Looking for Orthotics in Melbourne?
At the Pivotal Podiatry Clinic, we appreciate that Orthotics can be expensive and we won't pressure you into getting custom orthotics...
...instead, our qualified Podiatrists will provide you with a full Orthotics assessment and advise a suitable treatment plan for your unique foot problems.
We won't prescribe you orthotics if they’re not needed.
To see one of our Podiatrists for an appointment please click the button below.
But what if before you visited a Podiatrist...
...you wanted to educate yourself on Orthotics first?
Well lucky for you, that’s exactly what I’m going to share with you in the post below:
Pivotal Podiatry's Ultimate Guide to Custom Orthotics.
What are Orthotics?
- Orthotics are shoe inserts that are specially designed to correct biomechanical inadequacies of your feet or legs.
Orthotics can help your feet maintain correct alignment and can alter your foot's function by redistributing the weight you place on your feet.
Orthotics have the ability to alter your feets function by changing the joint positions and improving the alignment of the lower limbs and muscles.
This new improved alignment reduces stresses on the foot and lower limb, helping alleviate foot problems and reducing the likelihood of future overuse related injury.
Hit “Play” to see how you can benefit from orthotics:
What can Orthotics Help with?
- Orthotics are used by Podiatrists in the treatment and prevention of common foot problems such as:
- Flat Feet or Fallen Arches
- Plantar Fasciitis or Heel Pain
- Stress Fractures in the lower extremities
- Shin Splints
- Sever’s Disease or children’s growth plate problems
- Corns and callous
- Lower Back, Hip and Knee Pain
How can Orthotics help my feet?
- It is quite common for people to suffer from structural or alignment issues with their feet. Over 80% of the global population have feet that tend to pronate. Pronation happens when the foot rolls inwards and the arch of the foot flattens. Pronation is a normal part of the gait cycle, that acts as a shock absorber for the body.
Having structural issues or feet that tend to pronate, doesn’t necessarily mean that you will have problems with your feet.
However, it's when your feet experience excessive pronation, that people tend to have an increased rate of injury.
Problems caused by excessive pronation can include foot pain, knee pain, back pain, hip pain, inefficient gait, fatigued muscles, arthritis, and shoes wearing out quickly.
Orthotics can help your feet by increasing the shock absorption resources of the foot and provide relief to foot structures.
Why see a Podiatrist for Orthotics?
- Podiatrists are the primary health care specialists for ailments of the foot, lower leg and ankle.
They not only deal with the investigation and treatment but also consider prevention and rehabilitation of problems within these regions.
Podiatrists are very knowledgeable about the foot and its surrounding structures.
It’s this specialisation that allows them to understand the biomechanics of the foot and ankle. These areas are studied extensively by Podiatrists when qualifying at University.
What is involved with an Orthotics Assessment by a Podiatrist
Prescribing orthotics is a very careful and thorough procedure for Podiatrists.
To ensure a safe and successful foot treatment, an extensive service is provided.
Podiatrists are able to prescribe, alter and fit a variety of different orthotic devices including prefabricated orthotics, semi-customised orthotics and fully customized cast orthotics.
Below are the steps our Podiatrists take with your Orthotics Assessment.
Step 1 - Biomechanical Assessment
A full biomechanical assessment is provided before prescription of any orthotic device.
Various measurements are taken during this assessment to provide information about the position of different joints and the angles your feet have naturally.
This will allow your Podiatrist to determine if orthotics would be able to improve your natural alignment.
During this step the Podiatrist will conduct gait assessment, to determine the motion of your feet during the ‘gait cycle’.
The biomechanics of your gait are assessed using technologies like the video camera, iPad and treadmill equipment.
Step 2 - Determining appropriate type of Orthotics
If the biomechanical assessment indicates that you would benefit from orthotics, to help with your foot problems, your Podiatrist will recommend the appropriate type of orthotics for your foot type.
Your Podiatrist can tailor an orthotic solution to fit in with your desired outcome and budget.
When you are comparing the cost of orthotics, it is important to check what is included in the price.
Some Podiatrists include initial and any follow-up appointments, whilst others do not. Below we have listed detailed information on the different Orthotic options available from our Clinic.
If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to call the Clinic.
Prefabricated Orthotics that can be bought straight away ($100 - $150*)
Prefabricated Orthotics come in a large range of shapes, sizes, materials, degrees of arch support and other features.
They are designed to accommodate different types of shoes and activities.
Although they are pre-fabricated, these orthotics can be modified by your Podiatrist to address your individual foot.
Depending on the amount of usage, pre-fabricated options typically last between 6 months and 2 years.
The major benefit of these orthotics is they can be issued at your appointment, without having to wait for the orthotics lab to build.
Some private health insurance plans have an allowance for Podiatry, otherwise, prefabricated orthotics cost between $80 and $150.
Semi-Customised Orthotics (~$400*)
Semi-Custom Orthotics are a step up from the prefabricated option.
They are still non-casted orthotics, but they do allow for the selection of more durable materials.
Your Podiatrist can select from a range of criteria, to make your semi-custom orthotics.
They can also change the shape and material of the device, for creating the most appropriate option for your feet. This will provide additional comfort and control.
The prescription is taken, by taking a pencil trace of your feet.
This ensures the device is the correct shape and size.
They usually take the orthotics lab, around 10 days to be completed.
Semi-Custom Orthotics can last up to 4yrs, depending on how you wear them and the biomechanics of your foot.
Some private health insurance plans have an allowance for Podiatry, otherwise, Pre-Fabricated orthotics cost about $390.
It depends largely on the options that are picked.
Fully Custom Orthotics Melbourne ($690*)
Custom Orthotics are made exactly for your feet.
This is done by taking plaster casts (see photo right) of your feet, to get the most precise impression possible.
Your Podiatrist will then customise an exact prescription based upon your biomechanics assessment.
Your Podiatrist is able to select the exact degree of correction, shape, material, cover material, padding and accommodative additions, thickness and size of the device, along with biomechanical additions to alter the function of muscles and joints locally.
Custom Orthotics can last up to 10 years. This will largely depend on the material used in construction and how they are used. Custom orthotics cost approximately $600.
Custom Orthotics are the highest level of orthotics available and will usually achieve the best results.
*Prices are indicative and subject to change. If you have any questions about costs, please call our Clinic on 9939 3339.
Step 3 - Orthotics Fitting Session
Once the selected orthotics have been returned from the orthotic laboratory, you will need to have a fitting session with your Podiatrist, to make sure that the orthotics fit correctly in your shoes and are providing the required amount of correction.
If necessary, orthotics can be altered or modified to fit patient.
Your Podiatrist will give you instructions on how to use the orthotics and provide advice on how to best 'wear in' your orthotics.
For some people the correction provided by orthotics can be quite dramatic, so you will need to slowly start wearing the orthotics in your shoes.
Step 4 - Orthotics Review Consultation
Once you have been wearing your orthotics for a couple of weeks, your Podiatrist should get you back to monitor your progress with the orthotics.
This is a chance to see how your body is adapting to the extra correction and make any minor changes where needed.
I think I need Orthotics - what do I do now?
- If you would like an assessment by a Podiatrist, to determine if you could benefit from custom orthotics, please book online or call (03) 9939 3339 to make an appointment at a time that suits you!
If you have any further questions about custom orthotics, please don't hesitate to call one of our Podiatrists on (03) 9939 3339. Additional comments on Podiatrist Orthotics:
What Orthotics Do I need?
- The orthotics that a patient needs will depend on biomechanical factors that need to be assessed by a qualified Podiatrist.