Top Ten Ways Orthotics Can Aid the Chiropractic Patient
by Robert Striker, D.C.
A television show I happened upon the other night ran a humorous “top ten” list that got me thinking about some serious top tens more relevant to my patients. Prevention is the best care for health-related problems. One of the easiest, most logical, and extremely cost-effective “steps” for people of all ages to achieve wellness is the use of custom-made orthotics. When I started listing the advantages of using orthotics, I came up with a list of the “Top Ten Ways Orthotics Can Aid the Chiropractic Patient”:
- Add Balance to Your Life.
People are not symmetrical, and this fact is further exacerbated when patients suffer from pronation and the body compensates. Since this is one of the most common ailments we see as chiropractors, and the source of the majority of symptoms, it makes sense to prolong the benefits of adjustments with custom-made orthotics. With custom orthotics, balance is restored, the body is no longer compensating, and many of the pains and physical complaints suffered by patients are alleviated.
- Absorb Shock.
Second to restoration of balance is the necessity to decrease the heel-strike shock that our system experiences during day-to-day walking. Heel-strike shock is a major cause of musculoskeletal difficulties that, when left unchecked, can cause harmful consequences. Flexible orthotics balance the foot to control pronation and also allow movement needed to decrease the intensity of shock received by the body.
- Help Reduce Biomechanical Aches and Pains.
Orthotics positively impact the three critical functions of the foot: support, locomotion, and shock absorption. The long-term effect of abnormalities in one’s gait cycle is a resulting asymmetrical compensation by the body. As the body responds in this manner, symptomatic aches and pains develop throughout. By preventing or correcting the critical functions, orthotics relieve these problems before they begin.
- Improve the Biomechanics of the Knee.
By reducing the Q-angle, orthotics relieve stress to the knee caused by pronation. The knee - one of first casualties of any gait abnormalities – stretches and rotates properly when this stress is relieved.
- Align the Body.
By addressing all of the above factors, orthotics serve to improve foot alignment and symmetry and, ultimately, help improve overall body alignment.
- Promote Better Posture.
A body that is aligned and unburdened by aches and pains encourages better stance and posture.
- Alleviate Complications From Conditions That Affect the Foot.
With many diseases, as with diabetes, added stress to the feet causes complications that can ultimately lead to amputation. Properly fitting footwear is crucial. The alleviation of factors that bring about ulcer formation through the use of orthotics offers a cost-effective preventive measure.
- Increase Athletic Performance.
Consistency in athletic performance is experienced by athletes who find that orthotics significantly influence pelvic rotation and stride length, reducing fatigue and improving balance.
- Put More Spring in Your Step.
Orthotics affect the total body, make the wearer feel better, and reduce fatigue brought on by walking.
Advantages flow from the use of orthotics while undergoing chiropractic care. Patients enjoy heightened relief from many of their symptoms and complaints.