New Orthotics – What To Expect
Orthotics are a very effective, simple way to help reduce the load on certain areas in the foot and leg to allow these areas to recover or improve their function. Typically orthotics will be used in combination with other therapies such as dry needling, soft tissue therapy, shockwave and exercise rehabilitation. Given that feet are required to handle significant loads due to standing and walking (let alone running), an orthotic provides a powerful way to reduce stress to the injured area and allow normal movement without pain.
However, many people have concerns with orthotics and one of the main concerns is that they will be uncomfortable, painful or feel too hard. This certainly should not be the case and our podiatrist Elyssa walks you through what you will expect when you are fitted with a new pair of orthotics.
So you’ve just received your new orthotics from your podiatrist!
What should you expect to feel?
They may feel a little bit funny, to begin with if you’ve never worn orthotics before - this is to be expected. Below are the following recommended steps to ensure as little discomfort as possible. However, any sharp pain is not normal and should be discussed with your podiatrist.
How to wear them in - Important information:
It is extremely important to wear your orthotics in slowly - even if they feel okay, to begin with.
- Wearing orthotics is like going to the gym. If it was your 1st day at the gym, you would not go to the gym for hours and hours on end, you would start off small and work your way up to the desired length of time.
- After 1-2 weeks of wearing your insoles, you will have another podiatry appointment to assess how everything is going if there need to be any adjustments.
When you start wearing your new orthotics your podiatrist will advise on the following ‘wearing them in’ plan.
- Day one: 1 hour wearing orthotics - after 1 hour, take them out of your shoes and put in your old insoles.
- Day two: 2 hours wearing orthotics - after 2 hours, take them out of your shoes and put in your old insoles.
- Day three: 3 hours wearing orthotics - after 3 hours and so on... till around 7 days.
- Podiatry appointment to assess how you are going
- Continue with wearing in plan from 7 hours + provided you are not experiencing any discomfort.
Note: If you are experiencing any pain that is more than discomfort, you will need to get in touch with your podiatry clinic to organise an appointment to assess your orthotics and some modifications may be required. In some circumstances, it can take as long as 6 weeks for full adjustment to occur (depending on the severity of your condition) but for most people, they are able to wear them full time after a week.