Why might I need an assessment?
Your feet are the only part of your body that comes into contact with the ground when you stand, walk and run, so it is not surprising that if the alignment of your feet is incorrect, the whole alignment of your body can be thrown out.
This detailed biomechanical assessment can identify any faulty relationships between the structures and movements within the foot and leg, and help to identify and alleviate the cause of your symptoms.
What will the assessment involve?
The appointment will last about 1 hour and your Podiatrist will assess your walking and posture by taking an in depth look at the muscles and joints in your feet and legs. Measurements will be taken with you lying face down, lying face up, sitting, standing, and walking. On completion of the assessment, your Podiatrist will explain and discuss the findings with you and agree on the most appropriate treatment plan.
What will the treatment be?
The treatment can include exercises, restoration of joint mobility, the services of another health professional such as Physiotherapist or Chiropractor, and orthoses. Orthoses are insoles that fit inside your shoes to redirect movements within the foot. A combination of treatments is typical.
What will I need to bring?
You will need to bring shorts and wear loose/stretchy clothing to enable your Podiatrist to see your knees and allow movement around the joints being tested. It may be helpful to bring an older pair of shoes to observe wear patterns, and any footwear you may use for sports activities.
Wearing in Orthoses
Wearing orthoses is a bit like wearing new shoes; gradually wearing them in will help you get used to the corrections they make to your posture and walking.
Start by using the orthoses for only one hour the first day and two hours the next. Gradually increase this by about an hour each day until comfortably wearing them all day. Use only for as long as you feel comfortable in the early stages. You will probably feel a little discomfort initially as your feet and legs adjust to their new realigned positions. However if this is severe, take out the orthoses and start again the next day.
Always make sure that the time spent wearing the orthoses in involves some mild activity and standing, NOT sitting. Once you can wear them for 4 hours, you should be able to wear them all day. Before using the orthoses for sport or exercise, ensure you can comfortably wear them all day for at least a week. If after 2 weeks you still cannot wear the orthoses, please contact the clinic for adjustments.
Additionally, when you first stand on the orthoses, they may not feel comfortable. You may be aware of pressure under your arch and at the front of the device.
This is normal and will disappear within a short period of time.
Try your orthoses in all your shoes (except those with heel of 2 inches or more). You may find you have to alter your footwear, as not all shoes are suitable. If your shoes have an insole already in them, please remove to enable the orthoses to be based on a firm flat surface.
If you had exercises prescribed during your biomechanical assessment, you must continue with these, as orthoses alone will not solve the problem. Sometimes orthoses squeak, because they are designed to move within a shoe. If this does not disappear, try applying candle wax or chalk to the edges of the device.