Barrie Foot Clinic
What is a Foot Orthotic?
A Foot Orthotic is a custom molded device worn in the shoes to correct foot problems and alleviate pain.
Made from a three dimensional model of the foot, Orthotics should only be prescribed after a full biomechanical evaluation has been performed to determine the cause of the problem.
A three dimensional image, either by casting or a sharp shape scanner leaves no guess work as to the contours of the foot and the height of the arch needed in the orthotic.
What Types of Problems Are Orthotics Used For?
Orthotics are very effective in the treatment of heel spur and heel pain problems, corn, callous and ankle pain and arthritis. Certain knee, hip and lower back pain can also be treated with orthotics but this can only be determined after a full biomechanical evaluation.
How Long Should an Orthotic Last?
The length of time an Orthotic lasts depends on the materials used. Foam Orthotics wear out quickly while those made from polypropylene plastics can last for many years. Orthotics made from a combination of the two will usually last 3-5 years depending on factors such as weight and occupation.
Feet can change and elongate over time. Orthotic prescriptions must be updated to accommodate any changes in the foot. We recommend an Orthotic check every two years to monitor progress and assess the wear of the components. Children should be checked every year.
Hard or Soft Orthotics.
Orthotics should not be made from same material for every person. The results of the patient’s biomechanical exam are considered along with the person’s age, weight, stage of growth, occupation and foot type to determine the most suitable material and Orthotic.
The Barrie Foot Clinic makes a full range of Orthotics from hard to soft and 3/4 length to full length, depending on the patient’s needs.
Who Makes Orthotics?
Dispensing orthotics is not a regulated area of health care. That means anyone, regardless of education, training or knowledge in this area can dispense orthotics. It is therefore up to the patient to educate and inform themselves on who to consult.
At the Barrie Foot Clinic, the emphasis is on providing a complete podiatric assessment of the patient’s needs and prescribing foot care which meets those needs.
Can Orthotics Correct a Problem?
There are two main types of Orthotics: corrective and accommodative. Some problems can be corrected if caught early enough.
Corrective Orthotics can be used to treat in-toeing and out-toeing problems in children as well as flat foot problems.
Accommodative Orthotics are used to direct weight away from painful corns or callous and to encourage better foot function in muscle strain problems.
Orthotics can also be used as a preventative measure. Diabetics, for example, are known to become flat footed due to changes in the nerves and muscles. Orthotics should be worn before the arch starts to flatten.
My Child has Flat Feet.
Will She Grow Out of It?
Most children go through stages of being flat footed, knock kneed and bow legged. These are normal during certain stages of development.
If a child’s foot problem is beyond the normal range for his development or if the problem runs in the family, Orthotics may prescribed to correct the problem.
What Happens if My Child
Outgrows their Orthotics?
An Orthotic is usually good for two sizes. If the child goes through a growth spurt and suddenly finds the Orthotics uncomfortable, the child has likely outgrown them.
At the Barrie Foot Clinic, children 12 and under can receive replacement Orthotics for free should they outgrow them within an 18 month period.