For a vast majority of adults, we have been walking for our entire lives. This means we likely have forgotten how much effort went into learning how perform this basic function that seems so simple. We might take it for granted, but walking requires coordination between a lot of moving body parts. This biomechanical process is known as “gait” and it can be unique for all people.

When there are issues with the biomechanics used for walking—like when someone either over or under pronates—it can potentially lead to painful symptoms or take away the ability to perform favorite activities. In such cases, custom orthotics can be used as treatment to correct the underlying issue.

Now, there are patients who hear the term “orthotics” and wonder if we are talking about those shoe inserts that can be found in retail stores or pharmacies. Those are actually quite a bit different. Over-the-counter shoe inserts might offer extra cushioning or even provide additional arch support, but they cannot modify a gait pattern the same way as a custom set of orthotics.

The key word is “custom.” See, all human feet may share a similar structure, but are unique in their own ways. Because no two feet are completely alike, it is impossible to mass-produce a product that will correct the same issue for everyone. This is where custom orthotics come into play.

Our office can craft these medical devices after analyzing your unique feet and gait pattern. We will look for all abnormalities and issues being caused, and then use that information to fit orthotics that work specifically for your feet.

If you have questions about how custom orthotics can help improve an abnormal gait pattern and relieve painful symptoms, or you would like to schedule an appointment at any of our three Massachusetts offices, call Dr. Mitchell Wachtel at (978) 794-8406.