Foot orthotics are a frequently used treatment for a number of foot and lower leg dysfunctional conditions. These are designed and used to correct alignment and functional problems. All the scientific data shows that they are generally quite successful and the patient satisfaction type research demonstrates that they are well received by those who use them. That doesn’t imply that they don’t have issues. They do have issues. They can only be used in a shoe that has the space for the orthotics to fit into. This implies that they are unable to be used in certain kinds of sports footwear and some shoes used in certain occupations. Also, in some climates closed in shoes are not very common due to the temperatures. Some people just have a philosophical objection to foot orthotics because they look at them as being unnatural and as crutches that should not be used.
Although foot supports are pretty straight forward and can readily be designed to work in the short to medium term there are alternatives if patients choose to follow that alternative. Exercise therapy is one choice and muscle strength can be increased and used as an alternative. On the other hand, this will likely take a few months to work and it will be a wise decision to use foot supports to begin with as they are able help get some improvement almost straight away. If footwear is the problem and it is not possible for monetary, work-related, sporting or lifestyle reasons to alter the footwear, then there are options like the Archie Flip Flops which come from Australia and have a reasonable amount of arch support built in. There are more types of footwear such as these which do have arch support built in, however the amount is quite smaller compared to the Archies and may not be as helpful. As always you should always confer with your health professional about what they believe is the best option for you.