One of the more common questions I get from people is this “Dr., do I need an orthotic?

Of course the straight forward answer is… Maybe.

Much like people have different colored eyes or different types of noses, people have different types of feet. And no one is exactly the same! An orthotic is intended to either support the foot or to alter its function when it strikes the ground. What a person needs is predominantly based upon what foot pipe they have!

A person with less of an arch usually has a more unstable foot type. The bones in the arch of the foot tend to collapse and are not intrinsically stable on their own. This particular foot type tends to favor stronger more rigid support for the entire foot. A higher arch foot tends to favor more flexibility. This type of foot usually has good functional structure but frequently will appreciate a small amount of support in the arch. And then there are all the feet that lie somewhere in the middle of those two examples!

As a physician, I use orthotics frequently to treat a number of different ailments and injuries in the foot/ankle. The use of an orthotic should be based upon the type of problem you are treating. If you really want to know the answer to that question above the best way to find out is to see a professional. Part of an examination by a foot and ankle specialist is the evaluation of the structure, position and function of each foot. Your foot is the foundation for all of your weight-bearing activities. If your feet are off it can affect several other parts of your body including your knees, hips and back! Come talk to us today about how orthotic may be good for you.