Foot orthotics are commonly used to treat a variety of foot disorders from overpronation and collapsed arches to plantar fasciitis and other causes of heel pain. The research evidence points too they usually are pretty good at fixing a lot of the problems as long as they are indicated for that problem, Foot orthotics frequently get used to support the foot, when support of the foot may have nothing to do with the condition that the individual may have. This may lead to them being misused and unnecessarily blamed for treatment failures. The other problem is that there are many different types of foot orthotics as well as within each kind of foot orthotic, there is an practically infinite variance in the design features which can be included in them. If even one of those design features is not really good for the person, then the possibility of that foot orthotic doing any good is potentially reduced. For this reason the choice of the various designs is actually determined by the expertise and experience of the medical professional.
The podiatrist will decide on the design features needed for the individual and if the device needs to be customized for the individual or if a pre-made cheaper foot orthotic can be used. When it comes to custom made orthotics, the medical professional needs to take a plaster cast or optical scan of the foot locked in specific positions for the foot orthotic to be made on. When it comes to the style of the device different elements are considered. For example, if the patient has adult acquired flat foot, then something like a Cluffy Wedge type foot orthotic might be required. The Cluffy Wedge has special modifications to deal with the variety of issues that occur in that condition. When the problem is associated with a lack of shock absorption, then the orthotic really should be made to support that. The range of options is endless and will depend on the disorder present and the experience of the treating podiatrist.