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Orthotics Improve Walking Patterns

Did you know that 25% of the body’s bones are in the feet? Suspiring, right? Well, to be very precise, there are 152 feet bones that are intricately connected by a network of muscles and tendons. This structural network is responsible for supporting the entire body weight as you go about your daily activities. With every step, the feet have to handle the pressure of the body weight as well as the impact of the surface. This means that if there is even a slight problem with the feet, it is likely to cause imbalance to the entire body and research shows that there are more than 70% of the population with some degree of foot abnormality.

How Do You Detect Foot Abnormality?

There are a few signs that your feet may have functional problems

Have you noticed uneven wearing of inner and outer soles of your shoes?
Do you suffer from pain in the feet, ankles, hips that start as slight discomfort and graduates to excruciating pain over time?
Do you experience unusual fatigue, soreness or pain in the soles or arches of the feet?
Do you notice any painful swelling on your big toe’s first joint?
Do you suffer from recurrent injuries from the slightest strains in the lower leg?

The above pointers are in no way exhaustive of the symptoms of poor foot biomechanics, although they give a pretty good picture. It is advisable to visit a doctor if you experience any soreness, pain, swelling or discomfort in the feet, ankles, legs, hips, and back.

How to Correct Poor Foot Biomechanics

There are foot problems that are pretty common. You might experience pain and fatigue or recurrent injuries if you have flat feet (pronation) or high arches supination. Usually, these maybe be genetic, but can also be aggravated by poor footwear.  

A slight foot misalignment can cause serious problems not only to the feet but to the joints of the entire body starting with the ankles, knees and hips. If any of these problems is noted, your doctor can prescribe orthotics. Not only do the orthotic devices correct foot problems, our gait cycle improves as well.

How Do Prescription Orthotic Devices Work?

When the foot hits the ground and lifts off in the effort of movement, all the body weight is on the muscles. Usually, the muscles distribute the weight evenly on the foot if it is properly aligned. However, if it is even slightly misaligned, the weight fails to distribute evenly, causing pressure on some muscles. This resulting excessive strain causes injuries. Orthotics helps in rectifying the misalignment so that the weight is evenly distributed. This prevents and treats any conditions that may have been caused by the misalignment and relieve pain faster.

There has been significant improvement in the accuracy of diagnosis of poor foot biomechanics. Previously, the chiropractor would simply make a mould of the foot and let it dry and make orthotic from the foot impression. 

However, orthotic technology has developed in leaps and bounds and has made it possible to assess foot function within seconds. All you need to do is step on the GaitScan plate and the pressure points of the feet will immediately appear on the computer screen. This detailed scan shows the foot and gait pattern and helps pinpoint the exact abnormality, as well as come up with the right orthotic device to correct the abnormality. 

The Types of Orthotic Devices Available

The most common foot orthotic soles can be bought over the counter. They are perfect for extra cushioning of the feet to reduce the impact of the foot hitting the ground. You can find an insole your size at the store, or even online. You can visit your doctor’s footlogics to get a variety of orthotics. Over the counter orthotics are affordable and readily available.

If you experience such problems as pain, swelling and fatigue, it is advisable to have a doctor check on you first. This is because the problem could be worse, and would need customized orthotics to correct. If you have a serious, painful condition, over the counter orthotics can only aggravate the situation, especially when you pick the wrong. 

Parting Shot

Proper foot biomechanics, patterns, gait as well as proper footwear are all essential for healthy feet. If the daily activities involve a lot of walking or standing, it is essential to get well cushioned shoes. If you are an athlete, or participate in sports regularly, you also need to get your feet comfortable to avoid injuries and gait problems as well as prevent future foot pain

Foot orthotics are used to treat a myriad of conditions and deformities, including bunion, supination, pronation, Achilles heels, shin splints, corns and calluses, plantar fasciitis, among many others. Orthotic devices also help enhance sports performance, feet functioning and relieve pain!



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