Helpful Solutions for Foot Problems

There are many types of foot problems that can affect the functioning and comfort of your feet. These ailments include arthritis, bunions, lack of support in the arches, and others. Besides surgery, supportive footwear and orthotic inserts can alleviate or prevent some of these problems.

Orthotic inserts can either be purchased from a retailer, or they can be custom- made from a podiatrist’s prescription. Depending on the problem, one type is probably better than the other.

Store-Bought Orthotics

Often the orthotics you find at a store are made from fairly thin foam and have little or no arch support. They merely give a little extra cushioning for the bottom of your feet. However, there are some off-the-shelf inserts that are more expensive but provide more support and are somewhat moldable to the foot. The best candidates for store bought inserts are those people who have a classic type of foot shape because these inserts just come in standard shoe sizes. These are good for people who need only a minimum of extra support and have no major biomechanical problems. These inserts cost much less than custom-made.

Custom-Made Orthotics

To get a custom-made insert, you need to see a podiatrist to identify your particular foot problems. He will give you a prescription that will specify the curve and dimensions that you require. The person who makes the orthotic will take a plaster impression of your foot in order to get a precise mold. Any pressure points or calluses can be clearly marked. They can be made to fit dress shoes, casual or sport shoes. Your foot impression is made into an orthotic out of special material that fits into your shoe to minimize pain and discomfort. This type of orthotic insert is expensive, but improves foot functioning and can prevent future problems.


Choosing supportive shoes that are not too narrow in the toe area and that minimize pronation to either side are important in preventing problems like bunions, fallen arches and pronation. Our feet are made up of 52 bones, 66 joints and many muscles, tendons and ligaments. You need to keep your feet healthy to maintain balance and comfort so our heavy bodies can move about. It’s crucial that we purchase shoes that fit well, are comfortable and give sturdy support. Some of the current stylish shoes will likely not serve you well causing foot ailments in the future.