So much has changed with orthopedic shoes over the years. In the past, you did have a choice. It was black or brown. Keep in mind that people come to us with a prescription and a very specific foot problem. Some are quite serious and can eventually lead to the loss of the foot or leg. While not all have such consequences, certain issues with the feet can be debilitating with lifestyle altering effects. Today, Owens Carolina has available over 60 different styles of shoes, designed to cover every possible foot issue. Just because you have an orthopedic foot problem, it doesn’t mean your orthopedic shoe has to look like an orthopedic shoe.
So, if the shoe doesn’t have to be ugly, what does it have to do? There are certain qualities we need. The shoe needs be extra depth. This means that we need to have room in the shoe for the insoles we will be making. Depending on the pathology, we will design the orthotic to counter or accommodate your specific issue. We may design wedges into the orthotic to push the ankle into a neutral position. We may add a heel lift to balance a small leg length difference. We need the shoe to have the ability to accept modifications. There are some instances that require the sole to be split and elevations and wedges added to the outside of the shoe. If there is a brace that will be attached, the shoe must have the strength to accept these attachments. The shoe must be stable. It does no good for us to design an orthotic with a wedge, if the shoe will be over powered by the orthotic and your foot. The shoe must have a wide base. Side to side stability is necessary. The shoe needs to have the ability to make a good purchase on your foot. This is accomplished with a high padded heel area on the shoe. With good foot maintenance, serious acute issues can be avoided. There is never a problem filling your doctor’s prescription. Some issues may be covered by insurance.