It's a satisfying feeling to make foot pain a thing of the past by visiting your local podiatrist and getting fitted for orthotic inserts that you can wear in your shoes. These custom-fit items are made specifically for your foot shape and size, as well as your gait, which will reduce the discomfort you typically experience when walking and standing. Your orthotics should last you a long time, but failing to take care of them can lead to damage — and a follow-up visit to the podiatrist for replacement orthotics. Here are some tips you can easily adopt to help them last for as long as possible.
Remove Their Scent
If your feet sweat heavily, you can expect that your orthotics will eventually develop a scent — just like your shoes. The concern with overly strong-smelling orthotics is that you may not wish to keep them for a long time if you're embarrassed about how they smell. Don't try washing the orthotics, as water can loosen the glue that holds them together. Instead, sprinkle the top surface of each orthotic with baking soda, let it sit for several hours to absorb the odor and then shake the powder off. You can repeat this process as often as you'd like to keep odors at bay.
Keep Them Away From Heat
Orthotics and heat do not mix. Heat has the potential of not only softening the glue in the orthotics, but also of melting the plastic components and warping them. This will leave the orthotics unwearable. Be mindful of the conditions in which you place the orthotics. It's a good idea to avoid leaving them in your vehicle in the summer, as the heat can elevate dramatically and lead to damage. In the winter, if you're placing your footwear near a fireplace to dry off, make sure you remove the orthotics first.
Avoid Wearing Them In Small Shoes
When your podiatrist fits you for your orthotics, you'll often be asked to bring several pairs of footwear to the clinic to ensure that the orthotics will be suitable for each. It can be detrimental to use orthotics in shoes that are small or tight on your feet, such as dress shoes. With this type of footwear, the tight fit can put constant pressure on the orthotics and eventually warp them. If you have questions about a pair of shoes, it's a good idea to schedule another appointment to check with your podiatrist.
For more information on orthotic inserts, talk to a podiatrist like Klein Stanley Jay DPM.