Doctor Explaining Custom Orthotics | Annapolis PodiatristEvery foot is unique, and even when you wear high-quality, specialized footwear, you are not supporting the specific weaknesses and irregularities of your feet. However, with a shoe insert that is custom molded to your feet and designed to address your unique issues, you can overcome a wide range of potentially painful and debilitating problems.

What Is an Orthotic?

Ankle and foot orthotics are devices that are inserted into the shoes to protect the foot from a wide range of foot problems. They are available as prefabricated over-the-counter products and through a prescription for custom-made orthotics tailored to the individual. Although custom-made orthotics are generally more expensive, they may be more efficient in correcting certain foot and ankle ailments.

Typically shoe inserts can be made out of pieces of rubber, leather, plastic, or any other type of synthetic material. They may be used to:

  • Support the foot or ankle
  • Align the foot or ankle
  • Correct and prevent foot deformities
  • Improve function of the lower extremity

Orthotics are often recommended for people who put a lot of pressure on their feet by standing all day and for recreational and competitive athletes who have an increased chance of injury.

Common Signs You May Need Orthotics

  • You have heel pain when you first stand in the morning
  • You have foot, knee or back pain
  • You have pain after standing for extended periods of time
  • You have flat feet
  • You have calluses or pressure points
  • You roll your ankle or have ankle chronic ankle injuries
  • You are an athlete or play sports
  • You do a lot of cardio

Foot Pain and Injuries Often Treated with Orthotics

  • Heel pain
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Chronic ankle pain
  • Chronic ankle fratures or twisted/rolled ankles
  • Knee, back, or pain
  • Flat feet

Types of Ankle and Foot Orthotics

At Annapolis Foot & Ankle Center, we will generally recommend one of the following two types of orthotics to our patients who need extra support:

  • Full contact orthotic. A full-contact orthotic is a type of foot support that is designed to provide support and stability to the entire foot. It is custom-made to fit the individual foot and is typically recommended by podiatrists for patients with flat feet, overpronation, or other foot conditions that require additional support and alignment. The full contact design of the orthotic helps to distribute weight evenly across the foot and promote proper foot and ankle alignment.
  • Heel insert. A heel insert orthotic is a type of foot support that is designed to provide additional cushioning and support to the heel area of the foot. It is typically recommended by podiatrists for patients with heel pain or conditions such as plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis. The insert is made to fit into the patient's shoe and can help absorb shock and reduce pressure on the heel, allowing for more comfortable and pain-free movement.

Orthotics can reduce or even remove pain in conditions such as flat feet, Achilles tendonitis, rheumatoid arthritis, plantar fasciitis, bunions, and heel pain. Our foot doctors will decide if you are in need of foot orthotics as well as the type of orthotic that will be right for your foot type.

Get Your Custom Orthotic at Annapolis Foot & Ankle Center

We create our custom orthotics individually, using state-of-the-art techniques for orthotic design and production. Before we start, we study your foot shape, measurements, and gait mechanics (how you walk) to ensure that your orthotics work for you.

We can design orthotics for most shoe types, including athletic and dress shoes, so you won't have to give up on lifestyle and footwear preferences to find foot pain relief.

Nicholas Fifelski, DPM
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Experienced Annapolis podiatrist specializing in all sports injuries, wound care, and ankle fracture surgery.