Over many years, depending on factors like our lifestyle, footwear, and body type, our feet can slowly change shape and cause us discomfort. Perhaps our arches have collapsed slightly, or excess pressure causes heel pain, or narrow shoes have resulted in bunions. Fortunately, relief is possible with prescription foot orthotics, also known as foot orthoses. Orthotics are custom-molded foot inserts that allow for maximum comfort and pain-free healing, so you can get back to doing the activities you love. Let’s take a look at the difference between the two main types of orthoses: accommodative and functional.
Accommodative Foot Orthoses
The purpose of accommodative foot orthotics is to cushion and relieve pressure from painful areas on the bottom of the feet, which may be caused by calluses, ulcerations, or bone spurs. As a result, they are made of softer, more flexible materials like cork, rubber, or plastic foam. This gives them the advantage of being more forgiving and easier to adjust if necessary. On the other hand, they may be less durable and need continuous adjustments in order to work properly.
Functional Foot Orthoses
Functional foot orthotics are used to correct abnormal foot and lower extremity function, though they can also provide pain relief like accommodative orthotics. They are often made from more rigid or semi-rigid materials in order to treat joint pain, arch pain, and tendonitis and bursitis in the ankles, knees, and hips. Therefore, they are much more durable, but are more difficult to adjust after they are prescribed.
The doctors at the Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston have extensive experience working with patients of all ages and of all foot shapes. In any of their six offices in North Houston, they can walk you through a few simple examinations to determine the unique shape of your foot and have orthotics made to fit. You should not have to suffer with neuropathy, ingrown toenails, or any other foot or ankle ailment! Feel free to reach out to us at (281) 444-4114 with any questions or concerns, or simply contact us through our website!