Can I Use Custom Orthotics For Lower Back Pain?
Many people experience lower back pain, and it can be extremely uncomfortable, frustrating and even debilitating. Thankfully, there are many ways to treat this. Since you’re reading this article, you’re wondering “Can I use custom orthotics for lower back pain?” The answer is yes, but it depends on the source of your back pain. In many cases, custom orthotics can help reduce lower back pain if it’s a condition that’s starting with the feet.
Click here for more information on having custom-fit orthotics made for you at Global Health Physiotherapy Clinic.
What is the role of the feet in lower back pain?
The foot is one of the body's largest weight-bearing structures. It supports the entire body, including the knees and hips, carrying much of our weight when standing or walking around.
In fact, 80% of your body's weight is supported by your feet while standing up. It’s not a stretch to imagine how uneven or misaligned feet can throw your entire body’s balance off which leads to lower back pain!
And a misaligned foot can cause stress on joints throughout the body, increasing pressure on nerves in the spine and leading to painful symptoms like tingling and numbness in the legs.
A misaligned foot can also affect how a person walks. If someone walks with their feet turned outwards at an angle (toes pointed away from each other), this can put more pressure on the outer edges of their feet - even if they aren't overweight! This extra pressure causes excessive wear on your toes and can lead to corns and calluses developing on your soles.
In addition to wearing down your toes faster than usual, this type of walking pattern can also lead to knee pain because it puts extra strain on tendons that connect your shin bones (tibia) to your kneecaps (patella). The patella tendon attaches directly to the front of your knee joint, while the tibia tendon attaches directly behind it. When these joints are under high stress, they can become inflamed and irritated - leading to pain and inflammation in the knees and lower back.
Therefore, if you have been diagnosed with lower back pain and have noticed a change in how you walk or move around, you must see a podiatrist immediately. A podiatrist can examine your feet and legs and assess your overall gait pattern.
They will be able to determine if an imbalance is present, which may contribute to your lower back pain. And orthotics may also be an excellent option when treating this condition.
How can custom-fit orthotics relieve lower back pain?
But how do orthotics help with lower back pain?
Orthotics are devices that fit inside shoes and help realign your foot and ankle. It is made by taking a mold of your feet and then using it to make a shoe insert.
They work by redistributing pressure away from certain areas so that everything works smoothly together again. This helps relieve stress on joints in your lower legs, ankles, and knees, which can cause pain throughout your body. They also provide stability for weak areas of the foot such as arches or ankles that may have become weak over time due to wearing poorly-fitting shoes or running injuries like shin splints.
And the right pair of custom orthotics for lower back pain can help improve posture and alleviate pressure on nerves like in the spine to reduce symptoms of discomfort. Not sure if you need orthotics? Read "How do I Know if I Need Custom Orthotics?" and get the answer!
How can you tell if your custom inserts are working?
Here are some tips:
1. Check your posture
You may notice an improvement in your posture while wearing custom orthotics. This allows you to stand up straight and align your pelvis correctly. If you're not used to standing up straight, this might take some time! But as long as your posture improves when wearing the insoles, they're doing their job!
2. Notice an improvement In your pain level
If you have been suffering from lower back pain and decided to try custom orthotics as a relief, then it stands to reason that they should start impacting your pain level within a few days or weeks of wearing them regularly. If this doesn't happen, it may be time to seek professional help from a physical therapist specializing in back pain or another healthcare provider.
3. Don't wear them over the recommended time limit
While custom orthotics can provide significant relief from lower back pain if worn properly, they shouldn't be worn excessively to the point where they become uncomfortable or painful. In fact, there is no evidence that wearing them more than the recommended time limit would provide any additional benefits, so make sure that you take them off after 10 hours or so.
When should you get custom-made orthotic inserts?
In most cases, custom-made orthotics are recommended when other types of orthotics haven't helped relieve your symptoms of lower back pain. Click here if you want to know the difference between custom orthotics and orthopedic shoes.
And custom-made orthotics can take up to 2.5 weeks to make, so don't expect them to be ready the day you order them. Since they are made from a mold and sent off to be fabricated by a third-party lab, it would take time for the labs to make these insoles.
And if you had tried over-the-counter insoles or arch supports before but didn't find any improvement in your symptoms, then it may be time to ask your doctor about custom-made orthotics instead.
In conclusion, custom orthotics can be a very effective treatment for lower back pain. It is essential to understand your body and what causes your pain to tell your doctor what kind of orthotic is best for you.
If you are suffering from lower back pain, consider scheduling physiotherapy treatment from a qualified physiotherapist specializing in foot and ankle injury to get the right prescription.
Remember, even if custom orthotics aren't right for you, they aren't harmful either. More research on their effectiveness will help medical professionals diagnose and treat patients with lower back pain even better!
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