Will Orthotics help my back pain?
People with foot, knee, hip, and/or back pain are often told that they need orthotics. Whether it’s the doctor, chiropractor, or physical therapist who’s recommending them, a lot of people wonder whether orthotics really are worth the investment they represent.
Walking and standing with the feet, legs, hips, and spine constantly out of alignment can contribute to back pain.
Foot orthotics can theoretically help patients with back pain because they help realign how the feet articulate themselves on the ground, which in turn can affect the body’s entire overall posture and gait.
When orthotics actually do provide some pain relief (the best case scenario), they are doing two major things: absorbing the force of impact and changing the way your body moves.
In people with pronated feet and ankles, the bearing of body weight shifts to the outside of the foot, which can lead to painful bunions, among other problems.
Pronated feet and ankles can also cause the knees to turn inward, a condition commonly known as knock-knees. This abnormal placement of the knees then shifts the angle where the thigh bone meets the pelvis, resulting in an unsteady hip posture that also destabilizes the spine. The result is a domino effect that starts at the feet, works its way up the leg and into the pelvis and spine. Walking and standing with the feet, legs, hips, and spine constantly out of alignment can contribute to back pain.
The use of foot orthotics that realign the rear of the foot to prevent foot pronation may help stop this domino effect from occurring.