Your orthotics are carefully designed to improve the biomechanics of your body, but this change does not happen overnight. Think of it as a tire alignment for your feet and your body has to get used to the alignment gradually. When you first start wearing your orthotics, you are asking your body to change a pattern of walking it has established for a lifetime. This is not easy and can take up to eight weeks to accept. It is normal for have some cramping, aching, and discomfort during this break in period, but contact our office at 817-416-6155 to schedule a visit with your physician if you experience pain.
1. Watch Our Orthotic Video
- It is important to properly break in your new custom orthotics. Our video reviews the steps necessary for getting used to your new orthotics and what to expect.
2. Fitting in Shoes
- Orthotics do not fit in all shoes. Sports orthotics are meant to fit in running shoes, sneakers and deep tie shoes. They will not fit in most slip-ons, although some men’s slip-ons are big enough. Remove the factory insoles in the shoes for better fit and less slippage. Dress orthotics fit better in dress shoes up to 1.5 inch heels. They are made to fit over factory insoles if placed in sneakers. It is okay to trim the top cover to fit the orthotics in shoes.
3. Breaking in Period
- Wear your orthotics for only one hour the first day even if they feel great. Increase your time in the orthotics by one hour each day until you have reached five hours a day comfortably. Once you have reached five hours of wear, you can then wear the orthotics full time. Everyone is different; it is OK if you can only wear the orthotic for 15 minutes then increasing time each day.
- Great Tip: Wait to run or work out in your orthotics until you can wear them comfortably for at least 5 hours.
- Do not put your orthotics in the washing machine or dishwasher. They will melt. Clean your orthotics with a damp cloth then spray with Lysol or similar to deodorize.
- Mild to moderate discomfort during the break-in period is normal. If you experience severe discomfort or blisters, stop wearing the orthotics and contact us for an appointment.
- Orthotics need to be periodically assessed for material failure and changes in your biomechanics. The typical pattern of follow-up appointments is 2 weeks after you are dispensed the orthotics. After the initial follow up, 6 weeks if needed then 6 months then one year. For children, every six months is needed to assess growth patterns. Follow-up appointments may be altered at the Doctor’s request.
- Contrary to popular belief, orthotics do not last forever. The average lifespan of orthotics is approximately two years. After this period of time, the material starts to bend and the correction is less than optimal. This break down may be accelerated with weight fluctuations, activity level and heat exposure. Marathon runners and people who work 40 hours a week on their feet should replace custom orthotics once a year.