Tag Archive for: Orthotics

Learn about one study that links shoe orthotics to the ease and relief of Chronic Lower back pain caused by wearing painful shoes

When one’s body aches, it’s only natural that one searches for different methods of treatment that address the area of the body in pain. If your back is sore, it would be pointless to apply heat to your calf muscle. Additionally, in the event that your neck began to stiffen, you wouldn’t attempt to find help by stretching your toes.

With that said, our body parts do not entirely function independently from one another. There are a few occurrences when treatment applied to one area of the body does provide relief to another. One example brought to light is how shoe orthotics can help relieve chronic back pain.

Breaking down the 3 Research Groups

A man finishing tying his dress shoes.

You may find relief from back pain simply by wearing the appropriate inserts with uncomfortable shoes.

A 2017 study published in the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation included 225 adult subjects who had been encountering asymptomatic low back pain for approximately three months. Every member was allocated to one of three research groups. Members of the first group were provided custom-fit shoe orthotics to wear for a period of six weeks. The second group was provided with spinal manipulation. This included thoracic and sacroiliac high-velocity as well as low-amplitude manipulation. They were also given a soft-tissue back rub, and ice or heat packs. That is in addition to custom orthotics for the same period of time as the first group. Finally, the third group were the control, taking part in no treatment.

Discoveries from the Research Groups

A woman poses in worn out running shoes.

Those wearing custom-fit inserts experienced a significant reduction in back pain, compared to those without inserts.

Each member of the three research groups were assessed upon conclusion of the study. While each group revealed improvements in their level of back pain, the two groups wearing shoe orthotics experienced “significantly greater” reductions of chronic back pain. Furthermore, the group provided with chiropractic care in addition to utilizing custom shoe orthotics demonstrated the most reduction in pain.

In a Q&A distributed on Podiatry Today, medical experts speculated that shoe orthotics may provide help by revising walking issues, therefore removing the abnormal movements that contribute to chronic back pain. Another issue shoe orthotics help address are movements that contribute to asymmetries in the body, reestablishing the symmetry which naturally relieves pain.

While Pharmacy Orthotics are fine, Custom Orthotics are Best

A pair of grey shoes poses for a product image.

The APMA suggests purchasing orthotics that provide the correct support according to your level of activity.

While custom orthotics prove to provide the best results, many patients buy orthotics from a retail location or pharmacy store. In these occurrences, the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) recommend that individuals take their shoes with them to guarantee the inserts will fit. Furthermore, they encourage you try them on in the store before purchasing them. Additionally, the APMA suggests purchasing orthotics that provide the correct support according to your level of activity. Also, note that if you suffer from a disease such as diabetes, choosing the wrong insert may cause symptoms related to the disease to worsen. Therefore, one should speak with a podiatrist to find out which insures work best for them.


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