Walking, standing, and exercising with your body out of alignment can cause back, knee, hip, and foot problems. Custom orthotics can help alleviate body alignment issues. They correct your foot arch, which corrects alignment issues and often alleviates lower body pain.
How Your Foot Arch Affects Your Lower Body
If you have a normal arch, you should be able to draw an imaginary line from your tibia, which is your shin bone, to the space between your big and second toes. If you’re able to do this, you have proper body alignment and are less likely to have trouble with foot or back pain.
However, if you have a flat or high arch, the imaginary line would probably end up passing inside your big toe because these types of arches cause feet to roll inward, or pronate. Pronation causes improper body alignment and can result in many different types of lower body pain.
Pronated feet and ankles cause you to carry your weight on the outside of your feet. This results in alignment issues. Over time, your feet may develop problems, such as bunions, plantar fasciitis, and calluses. These conditions can be quite painful and may eventually require medical intervention.
Pronated feet can also cause your knees to turn inward. This condition is informally known as knock-knees and is rather common. When your knees turn unnaturally inward, it shifts where your thigh bones and pelvis meet. This causes hip alignment problems and can destabilize the spine and trigger back pain.
How to Correct Arch Problems
Correcting arch problems is relatively easy to do. Custom-fit orthotics, such as the ones by Align Custom Fit Footwear, are a good solution. They can prevent and treat foot, knee, hip, and back pain.
To get the best orthotics that will provide the most relief, you should be evaluated by a professional clinician. It’s important that the clinician concentrates on more than just your arch. He should evaluate your entire musculoskeletal system to get to the root of the problem.
What to Expect
You should undergo a gait analysis so your clinician can analyze how you walk. You’ll walk and run on a treadmill, and your movements will be recorded. The clinician will then evaluate your gait so he can fit you with an orthotic that will provide you with the most relief. This step shouldn’t be skipped; it’s an important part of assuring your orthotics fit well.
Be prepared to answer questions about any pain you’re currently having and what types of activities you participate in. For example, if you like to play tennis or run in marathons, be sure to let your clinician know. If you’re happy walking around your block for exercise, tell him. The more information you share, the better able he’ll be to help you. Also, share any medical problems you have that you think may be influenced by your arch or footwear.
Bring two or three pairs of old shoes with you so the clinician can see their wear. This can tell him a lot about how your feet move inside your shoes.
Orthotics have come a long way. They’re no longer the clunky, awkward footwear of your grandparent’s generation. You now have your pick of fashionable, modern shoes, and no one will ever know they’re custom-fit orthotics unless you tell them.
Share any concerns you have about appearance. This is a valid concern and one that should be addressed. Everyone wants to look good, and your clinician will understand this.
Improper body alignment can trigger a myriad of problems. It can cause painful calluses and bunions, as well plantar fasciitis. It can result in knee and hip pain and is a common cause of lower back pain. However, the cure is often as simple as getting a pair of custom-fit orthotics. They help correct arch and alignment issues and relieve pain.
Orthotics are a simple, affordable way to improve your health and quality of life. Make sure to see a professional for a fitting so that your new orthotics are crafted just for you.