What are orthotics?

Orthotics may help reduce or eliminate arthritic pain in the lower extremities by correcting misalignment of joints and or supporting weakened muscles.

There are two types of orthotics: custom made and prefabricated.

The most expensive orthotics are custom made usually by a podiatrist or chiropractor. Patients say these give the most pain relief but are pricey and not covered by insurance.

Some store specializing in foot care have employees trained to take molds of  your feet then select a prefabricated orthotic.  This too can be expensive but probably less than custom made.

The least expensive is an over the counter shoe insert. You can purchase these from drug stores, Walmart, or the grocery store.  Some Walmart stores have a Dr. Sholl's machine that measures pressure points when you stand on the machine.  The machine takes the information  and helps you select the correct shoe insert. 

Expect to replace orthotics every 2-3 years if custom made.  If you buy  over the counter shoe inserts, you may need to replace them every 3-6 months.  Talk with your healthcare professional before purchasing orthotics.