If required, all ages can benefit from a foot orthotic. From discomfort in the foot to severe problems such as diabetic foot ulcers, a foot orthotic can help a wide range of patients. A detailed assessment from a footwear and orthotic expert, such as a Canadian Certified Pedorthist, can confirm if a foot orthotic will assist a patient with a particular foot, leg, or even back problem.
The appearance of a foot orthotic depends on what condition it is designed to treat and the type of shoe it will be worn in. Canadian Certified Pedorthists work closely with their patients to determine the type of over-the-counter device or custom-made foot orthotic that is most appropriate for their individual needs.
The type of device depends on many factors, including: the patient’s lifestyle, athletic activities, foot type, and the problems the patient is encountering.
Depending on its purpose, the size of a custom-made foot orthotic may vary significantly from the full length of the foot to a short device that ends behind the metatarsal heads (ball of the foot). Smaller devices are usually designed to fit in shoes that do not have a removable inlay, such as dress shoes.
A foot orthotic can be made from materials ranging from soft foam to hard plastic, depending on a patient’s needs.
Many third party insurance plans have coverage for custom foot orthotics, orthopaedic footwear, modified footwear and custom footwear from Canadian Certified Pedorthists. All plans across Canada differ so it’s important to look into the specifics in your own plan to confirm your specific coverage. Specifically, you’ll want to review who can refer for foot orthotics and the price range covered. If your insurance plan covers pedorthic services you will need to visit your healthcare provider and ask for a prescription.
Individual provinces also have programs in place through WCB/Work Safe and social assistance for patients that qualify. Check with your individual provincial regulations for more information.