Proper Footwear and Custom Shoe Orthotics

Tackling Peripheral Neuropathy

Don’t you just love shoes? I bet you love them so much that you probably have had the same pair for years. Did you know you should change your shoes quite frequently to prevent wear and tear on your body? In this week’s blog, we will discuss why it is important to change your shoes every so often, what type of shoe to look for, the benefits of custom shoe orthotics, and what Wilkins Spinal Care can do to help!

Why Should I Change My Shoes Frequently?

Do us a favor and take off your right shoe. Look on the inside of the shoe and then flip it over and look at the back of it from toe to heel. Now remember what you just looked at and do the same procedure with your left shoe. Did you see the wear and tear on both shoes? We can almost guarantee that one shoe is worse than the other. Scientific evidence shows that the foot that an individual will favor has more wear and tear on that shoe. The reason why it is important to get a new pair of shoes on a regular basis is because the uneven trend between a left and right shoe results in uneven posture, causing pain to the lower extremity and can run all the way up the spine.

Now that you know why it is important to get a new pair shoes on a regular basis, let’s discuss how often you should buy a new pair. It all depends on your activity level and if you are using proper body mechanics. Someone who is training for an Olympic race will have a lot more wear and tear on their shoes than an individual who sits at a desk all day. Someone who drags their feet on the ground and stomps when they walk will have more wear and tear on their shoes versus an individual who uses proper body mechanics and gait form. An active person may need to get a new pair of shoes every 6 months and possibly before then if needed. Someone wearing shoes casually may need to change their shoes once a year. We recommend that you should change your shoes at least once a year to prevent low back and/or lower extremity issues. The key is the more you use your shoes, the sooner you will need to get a new pair.   

What Type of Shoe Should I Be Looking For?

There are hundreds, even thousands of different shoe brands. Before even considering a brand, think of comfortability. Know your foot size. A lot of people will get a size too small or too big for that matter. A shoe to small can result in disrupted blood flow and cramping to the feet, and shoes to big can result in tripping and injuries. The key is to find a shoe that is snug but has room to breathe as well. That is the definition of a “comfortable shoe.”

Now that you have an understanding of the “comfortable shoe,” now we have to find a brand that works best for you. No brand shoe is the same as another and there is always that sets one brand apart from another. Some shoes may work for one person but may not work for another. Just like every shoe being different, so are feet. That is why brand doesn’t really matter. A shoe brand may get bad reviews, but there maybe individuals that say it’s the best brand they ever had, and that is okay. Our best recommendation is to try on a different variety of shoes and styles and see what feels most comfortable for you. This rule applies for running, dress, casual leisure and some boots as these shoes will have support. Shoes such as flip flops/sandals, high heels and different types of boots have no sole or arch support.

The Benefits of Shoe Orthotics

Shoe Orthotics allow for extra support and comfortability taking pressure of the feet, muscles and underlying tissue. They also allow for postural correction, stabilization and pain reduction to the low back and lower extremity. Orthotics can also help relieve pain in plantar fasciitis and different neurological conditions affecting the feet such as diabetes. Even athletes wear orthotics to stay pain free and increase sport performance.  

Perhaps the two most popular shoe orthotics that most individuals have heard of are “Dr. Scholls” and “FootLevelers.” Both companies determine which orthotic will best fit the patient by how much pressure the individual is putting on their feet. A lot of people have had great success with these orthotic brands, however, there is still something missing that needs to be addressed.

How Can Wilkins Spinal Care Help?

At Wilkins Spinal Care, we offer a special shoe orthotic brand called “Aline.” What sets the “Aline” brand apart from other orthotics is that rather being assessed on how much pressure one is putting on their feet, they are being assessed through postural analysis. Once the postural angle is determined, we fit the size appropriately and the patient is on their way.

The reason why we are emphasizing the “Aline” product over any other orthotic is for two reasons. 1. Everything is being assessed through the patient’s natural posture and is being corrected. 2. We have seen nothing but great results with the “Aline” orthotic. Since we started to advocate this product, we have not had one bad review. Patients report back with better posture, reduction in pain, and enhanced activity.

We supply 4 different types of “Aline” products based on activity level and sports performance. To learn more about our orthotics, feel free to visit our website at Remember to protect your feet and change out your shoes from time to time!