Arch supports, also known as orthotics, are devices that are inserted into shoes to support the arches of the feet and help with alignment. There are many different types of arch supports available on the market today, ranging from simple over-the-counter (OTC) inserts to custom-made devices prescribed by a podiatrist or other medical professional.
Arch supports can be used to treat a variety of foot and ankle problems, including heel pain, plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis, bunions, hammertoe, and some forms of the knee, hip, or back pain. If made according to your foot’s unique structure and needs, custom-made arch supports can be life-changing.
Let’s talk more about arch supports and what they can do for you.
Why Does The Arch Need Added Support?
Some people can greatly benefit from extra arch support more than others. These signs may indicate your arches need extra support:
- You have flat feet or low arches.
- You experience foot pain, especially in the heel or arch area.
- Your feet feel tired and achy after standing for long periods of time.
- You suffer from chronic foot injuries.
What Type of Arch Support Do I Need?
While there is no single best type of arch support for all people with foot problems. It ultimately depends on the individual’s specific condition. There are certain features that should be considered when choosing an insert or orthotic device, such as:
- The level of support you need: For milder conditions, such as flat feet or low arches, softer arch supports may provide adequate relief. However, more serious conditions like plantar fasciitis may require firmer, higher-quality devices for optimal results. In general, custom-made orthotics offer superior support compared to OTC products, regardless of the condition being addressed.
- The type of shoes you wear: Different types of shoes require different types of arch supports. For example, running shoes need more cushioning than dress shoes. It’s important to choose an insert that will fit well in your chosen footwear without causing discomfort or slipping around inside the shoe.
- Your lifestyle and activities: If you lead an active lifestyle or participate in sports regularly, you will need a different type of arch support than someone who spends most hours sitting down during the day. Athletes often benefit from custom-made orthotics because they can be specifically designed for their particular sport(s) and needs.
What Are Custom-Made Arch Supports?
Custom-made arch supports or orthotics are made from a mold of your foot, and they fit snugly into your shoes. The latest technology is 3D foot scanning, which measures your foot in great detail while you sit in a comfortable seated position right in a podiatrist’s office.
Since custom orthotics are made specifically to fit your feet, it means they will be more comfortable and provide you with better support. They can also be made to address specific problems you may have with your feet, such as pronation or high arches. In addition, custom orthotics can be made from a variety of materials to suit your needs and preferences, which makes them vastly more effective than over-the-counter arch supports.
Custom Orthotics in Cincinnati, OH
If you are interested in custom-made arch supports, consult one of our board-certified podiatrists at Cincinnati Foot & Ankle Care. We offer you the latest in foot scanning technology, for greater comfort and relief, and more precise treatment of your foot issues.