Our bodies change as we age. Many adults report experiencing lower back pain at least occasionally. Lower back pain can stem from a wide variety of causes, and be resolved through a wide variety of solutions. Every patient is different, and your doctor will know upon closer examination what may be causing your back pain. Understanding what causes the pain is the first step to finding relief from that pain.
Sometimes, relief is found from the ground up. Your feet can be contributing to (if not outright causing) chronic lower back pain. Many patients find the solution they need through custom orthotic devices.
Foot Pain and Back Pain Are Closely Connected
It’s a well established fact that pain and discomfort beginning in the foot can travel to the lower back. Your feet are the foundation for your gait. The impact of every step you take travels from your foot, up your legs, through your hips, and to your lower back. If your feet aren’t properly supported, your lower back will begin to show signs of wear and tear.
When your feet aren’t functioning correctly, you probably overcompensate for that. This overcompensation might be subconscious. You might lean a little to one side or modify your gait to make walking a little more comfortable for your feet. When you do this, you’re creating consequences for your lower back. Irregular gait negatively impacts spinal alignment, sometimes leading to complications that can be more difficult to correct.
There are plenty of causes of lower back pain that do not perfectly correlate with foot pain. If you have structural issues impacting your feet, resolving them can help to mitigate some of your lower back pain. Some patients may find that they require more than just custom orthotics, but that doesn’t mean that custom orthotics aren’t a valuable part of their personalized solution.
The Advantage of Custom Orthotics Over Shoe Inserts
Women’s flats and men’s dress shoes have a tendency to lack necessary support and cushion, and the effects are noticed when the shoe is worn for a prolonged period of time. If you work a job or attend an event that requires you to wear shoes that prefer form over function for a prolonged period of time, you probably can’t wait to take them off.
Shoe inserts are designed to make shoes more comfortable. That’s all they do. They aren’t designed to provide specialized support to the foot, correct structural deformities, support arches that have fallen flat or are raised too high, or to relieve pain associated with plantar fasciitis. They’re a temporary solution to a temporary problem.
If you have foot pain that translates to back pain in all of your shoes, shoe inserts aren’t going to help. A custom orthotic is designed specifically for your foot, and it’s meant to address the cause of the pain and act as a preventative measure. You won’t need to change your gait or take frequent breaks to sit when your feet have the support they need. Walking and standing are more comfortable because of the provided structure – not because a little bit of gel or foam is cushioning your step.
What Custom Orthotics Are Designed to Do
Custom orthotics are prescription medical devices created specifically for each patient. No two feet are the same – even if those feet belong to the same person. A doctor may prescribe custom orthotics to support the foot and correct the gait, keeping the spine aligned and reducing the strain that foot deformity or injury may pose on the lower back.
A high tech digital scan is taken of each of the patient’s feet. This scan is run through complex mapping software that assesses the shape and measurement, creating a digital inverse cast of the foot. These casts are sent to a lab that creates a perfect supportive device designed specifically for the patient.
Once you receive your orthotic devices, you’ll put them in a pair of comfortable shoes that fit well. It may take some time to get used to wearing these devices. They’re going to change the way you walk, especially if you started walking differently to work around your foot pain. As you adapt, you’ll find that maintaining proper posture is easier.
Over time, you’ll find that walking properly is easier. With supplementary treatments, lower back pain may be completely alleviated or significantly reduced. Your doctor may recommend other treatments, such as massage or physical therapy, to help restore the health and function of the muscles impacted by pain. Use your custom orthotic devices in conjunction with your doctor’s orders.
Getting The Help You Need
At Tony Martin Limb & Brace we’re able to provide patients with the latest technological advances in orthotics treatment. We have decades of experience assisting patients with lower back pain in achieving the perfect custom orthotics to make movement more comfortable. We’d be honored if you chose us as your Tucson orthotic care provider.