In most cases, when you receive your custom foot orthotics, you will have them fit into whichever shoes you wear most frequently, or the shoes recommended by your Pedorthist. But, what happens when you need to use your orthotics in other shoes? Some of the most common questions we hear from our patients are about fitting them into other footwear. We answer the most commonly asked questions below:
Can You Put Orthotics in Any Shoe?
The short answer is no, but we are usually able to slightly adjust the orthotics for a good fit in multiple shoes. The best way to ensure a good fit in all of the shoes that you would like to wear your orthotics in is to bring them to your initial fitting appointment. Your SoleSceince Pedorthist will adjust your orthotics to fit into each of the shoes interchangeably, provided that they are shoes that are compatible with the device.
If you purchase shoes after you already have your custom orthotics and are not satisfied with the fit, you can see your SoleScience Pedorthist for a quick adjustment at any time. In the majority of cases, these adjustments can be made quickly and easily in-clinic.
What if my new shoes are very different from the ones my orthotics were fit to?
In some cases, a new pair of shoes may be drastically different from the ones your Pedorthist fit your orthotics to originally. In these cases, your Pedorthist may be able to completely overhaul your orthotic devices to fit into your new footwear. These changes may need to be done at our central fabrication facility, rather than in the clinic.
How Do I Know if My Orthotics Fit Correctly in My Shoes?
Your custom orthotics should fit comfortably and securely with your feet inside your shoes. Always remove the sock liner or footbed from any shoe you want to use your orthotics in before inserting your orthotics. The front of your orthotics should slide in smoothly and fit comfortably into the front of your shoes without any bunching or wrinkling. If the orthotic is too long, wide or a different shape, you can carefully trace the sock liner that you removed and trim it with scissors.
The firm part of your orthotic should sit solidly within your shoe, without tipping or rocking. The entire orthotic should feel securely fit within the shoe. If the fit isn’t quite right, don’t worry! Your Pedorthist will be able to fit your orthotics with just a simple adjustment.
Do I need to buy bigger shoes to use my orthotics?
Always buy shoes to fit your feet, even when you are inserting orthotics. If your footwear is designed to work with a custom orthotic device, you do not need to buy shoes that are larger to accommodate your orthotics. Another important point to remember is that not all shoes are made in the same way, which often means that there are differences in sizing between brands and manufacturers.
We always recommend that you consider your typical shoe size as the “starting point” when shopping for shoes. A size 8 in one brand might fit like an 8.5 in another or vice versa. Don’t shop based on the number on the box, always shop based on the fit and feel of the footwear. When possible, bring your custom foot orthotics with you when shopping.
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Do I have to remove the insoles when using my orthotics?
In most cases, we recommend that you remove the insole, or footbed, from your shoes and replace them with your custom foot orthotics. Most shoes that are compatible with orthotics have a removable footbed that provides the space for your custom foot orthotics to fit inside comfortably. It is always advisable to remove the footbed or insole from your shoes and replace them with your custom foot orthotics. You should not place your orthotics on top of the existing insoles. Your orthotics work best when they rest securely in your shoe, directly on the midsole (interior) of the shoe.
There are some cases, however, where there is no removable footbed, but the space within the footwear is sufficient to use your custom foot orthotics comfortably. In these instances, if the interior of the shoe is flat and secure, and there is enough space inside for your orthotics and your foot to fit comfortably, you can successfully use your orthotics.
Can I Wear My Orthotics in Any Shoe?
While many shoes are compatible with your custom foot orthotics, there are some styles that are not. Occasionally the volume of the interior of the shoe is simply too shallow to accommodate your foot and your orthotic. This is commonly found in dress shoes. In some cases, changes to the orthotic itself may be an option, but with shoes like ballet flats, pumps or other low volume footwear, orthotics may be incompatible. In these cases, discuss the use of these shoes with your Pedorthist.
Generally speaking, your Pedorthist will advise you on how and when you should be wearing your orthotics throughout your treatment. This may change over time, as you heal from an injury or as your condition changes over time. This is one of many reasons it is important to check in with your Pedorthist yearly to ensure that your treatment goals are being met and that your orthotics are still performing well for you. This is not to say you need to replace your orthotics yearly, but rather have them re-evaluated annually.
How Often Should I Visit my Pedorthist?
If it has been over a year since your last appointment with your SoleScience Pedorthist, we would love to see you back in for a check-up. If there have been any changes to your health, activities, or occupation, it may be beneficial to book an appointment with your Pedorthist. Contact us at any time to book an annual follow-up appointment, or with any questions about your orthotics or foot health.