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853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
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By Dr. Philip S. Pinsker
August 19, 2015
Category: Orthotics
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If you have been suffering from chronic foot pain for a long time and have put off going to see the podiatrist because you fear surgery, here’s something you should know: custom orthotics can relieve many chronic foot problems without surgery. Dr. Philip S. Pinsker, a board certified podiatrist with more than 3 decades of experience helping patients in the Washington and Allegheny area manage their foot and ankle problems, can help you determine if custom orthotics are right for you.

Orthotics refers to any device that is inserted into your shoe. It can be anything from over-the-counter felt pads to custom-made inserts that correct your walking pattern. Sometimes referred to as arch supports, orthotics enable you to stand, walk, and run, comfortably. Custom-made orthotics are designed to fit your unique foot structure. They are often able to relieve pressure on a painful area and can help keep the foot in proper and healthy position.

Types of Orthotics

Orthotics come in many shapes and sizes and are made of various materials. They fall into three categories: those that protect the foot, those that change the functioning of the foot and those that do a combination of both.

Rigid Orthotics

As their name implies, rigid orthotics are composed of a hard material such as carbon fiber or plastic and are made from a mold of your foot. They are used primarily in walking and dress shoes and their job is to control foot function, usually in two major foot joints that lie right below the ankle. Using these orthotics may improve or eliminate aches and pains in your legs, thighs, and lower back.

Soft Orthotics

Made of cushiony materials, soft orthotics are used to absorb shock, increase balance, and take pressure off painful or uncomfortable spots on the foot. They can be worn against the sole of the foot, from the heel, past the ball of the foot, including the toes. Made from a mold from an image taken, these types of orthotics are effective for diabetic, arthritic, and deformed feet.

Semi-Rigid Orthotics

These orthotics are made up of layers of soft material that is reinforced with more rigid materials. They offer balance for walking and for athletes participating in sports. Semi-rigid orthotics are often prescribed for children to treat structural foot issues and to help athletes minimize pain while they train and compete.

If you are suffering from chronic foot pain or discomfort, make an appointment in our Washington, PA office today to find out the best method for relieving your symptoms.

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