Orthotics & Insoles

Foot impression in foam box for insole prescription

Podiatric bio-mechanical orthotic devices, also called foot appliances, shoe inserts, foot beds or arch supports, are semi-permanent devices which are placed in the shoe to improve foot function or accommodate foot shape in much the same way that spectacles improve imperfect eyesight. An orthotic may be designed to carry out any one or a combination of different functions.

Most people who consider using orthotics are suffering some form of pain, or at least discomfort, and will often be experiencing the first symptoms of some structural or functional abnormality of their feet or legs.

What do orthotics do?

Orthotics reposition the foot structure to achieve optimum skeletal balance, thereby reducing the stress and pain on the joints that are causing the discomfort. They do this by controlling joint movement, and by altering some angles to prevent excessive motion. This redistribution is important and one result from this is often less fatigue when walking, pain relief to the feet ankles and knees. Quite simply they help your feet work more efficiently. They sometimes have a positive benefit on the hip, knees and back as well.

Many orthotics look like arch supports, but they are not intended to support the arch. Orthotics are angled individually to control the heel and forefoot, and to prevent excessive motion. There are many different types of orthotics. The type that is used depends on the activity in which the patient is involved, the shoes they want to wear, and the underlying foot problem. As each patient has different needs, the variety of insoles/orthotics we issue vary and so does the price. If your need is quite specific, you may require a casted pair of orthotics.

Custom orthotics are made specifically for your needs and can be prescribed by using specific measurements or may be made from a cast of your feet.

Demonstration of foam box with foot impression

What we do

At Family Feet Solutions we can help you with custom orthotics & Insoles. Our initial biomechanical assessment appointments involve:

  • Taking a medical history to include any injuries/surgeries/major illnesses/medication
  • Discussion of any symptoms/problems or pain
  • Analysis of your gait/posture and foot function
  • Discussion of any findings and of possible solutions and agreeing a management plan
  • If it is agreed that you need an orthotic or insole, we will discuss whether off the shelf or custom made is the best device for your needs

For more information on related topics visit the College of Podiatry.