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What’s The Purpose Of Using Orthotics? In simplest definition, orthotics is a customized foot support that are available in form of splints, inserts or shoe insoles. Not only that, they are being used to restore natural foot function. When it comes to children, this can be used as a way to treat biomechanical foot issues. Biomechanics is actually the study of the body’s movement when you are walking, playing sport or running. A common biomechanical foot issues are over or under pronation. Pronation is the foot’s normal movement that absorbs the impact when you are walking or running. Over pronation however is when the foot rolls or moves inward more than the normal 15 percent and could cause problems with your foot and ankle stabilizing body and inefficiently absorbing shock. But in under pronation, this is when the inward movement is less than normal 15 percent and with that, the force of the impact is more on the outer side of foot. In an effort to promote joint and muscle stability for those who were born with low muscle tone or those who are born prematurely, orthotics may be used as part of a treatment plan. You can have your orthotics either custom-made or ready-made. Choosing the right orthotics for children will depend on the foot issue or underlying muscle that the child is suffering from.
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For children under the age of 7, they usually have flat feet but this will outgrow naturally. According to experts, it isn’t in the children’s best interest to alter the foot alignment if they’re younger than 7 and if they simply have a minor biomechanical disorder. If the child is older than 7 years for example, the physician can use them in order to correct misalignments that are from over or under pronation. You may bring your child to a podiatrist to be able to have their gait and feet assessed and after that, they will be recommending the best orthotics to be used.
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It is important to use orthotics for children who are as young as 2 years old in some cases. A few situations where this will be useful include children with motor disorders such as developmental disabilities, cerebral palsy, issues with muscle tone and so forth. These children will probably benefit from using orthotics and in such situations, it is best to go with customized one. The podiatrist will do a biomechanical assessment of their feet and gait and the gathered info will help them make custom orthotics that’ll help the child with their special needs. It can help to properly align the child’s legs and feet throughout their growth and development.