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Phone: 978-794-8406
Mitchell Wachtel D.P.M.

How to Tell When You Need New or Refurbished Orthotics

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When to replace orthoticsCustom orthotics are among the best and most versatile tools we have at our disposal to treat the fundamental causes of foot pain. Fortunately, they tend to be quite durable, allowing you to enjoy the extra support and cushioning on a daily basis.

While a good pair of orthotics should last you at least a couple of years—and perhaps several more, depending on how you use and care for them—they will eventually need to be adjusted, refurbished, or replaced. Nothing lasts forever, and they have to hold up to intense weight and pressure every time you wear them.

When you get orthotics from us, we will generally schedule periodic check-ups to ensure that your orthotics are still providing you with a high level of performance and care. That being said, if you have any concerns about your orthotics, don’t wait to the next annual appointment—be proactive and get in touch with us right away.

Not sure if it’s time to bring the old orthotics in for a checkup? Here are some signs you could be due for a tune-up (or a new set):

You feel foot pain creeping back. Custom orthotics are designed to fit your feet your feet exactly—that’s why they’re made from a precise mold. But after a few years, the fit might not be quite as exact as it once was. Orthotics can change shape due to time and pressure, and so can feet! Fortunately, if the orthotic is still in good shape structurally, we can usually simply readjust it. In other cases, we might need to refurbish or replace softer components while leaving a harder shell alone.

You notice strange wear patterns or damage to your shoes. For example, uneven tread wear or damage to the arches of your shoes could be an indication that your orthotics need to be adjusted.

You’ve experienced a major life event that could affect your walking gait. This could include, for example, a recent knee surgery, pregnancy, or even losing or gaining a significant amount of weight since your orthotics were first prescribed.

You notice visible signs of wear or structural damage to your orthotic. This one is obvious. If any part of the orthotic is noticeably cracked, worn thin, or pieces have broken off, they most definitely need to be replaced.

If your orthotics just don’t seem to be offering the relief they used to and you need to get them evaluated—even if we weren’t the ones who originally fitted them for you—give us a call toll free at (888) 616-2512.

Dr. Mitchell Wachtel
Dr. Mitchell Wachtel is a North Andover podiatrist who specializes in the treatment of the feet and ankles.
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