How should a mold be taken to make a custom orthotic?


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A custom orthotic must, in some way, be designed for you specifically. That's what makes it custom, after all. There are many ways to accomplish this and they are not created equal.
Some orthotics are direct molded. Meaning there is a template orthotic for your size that becomes pliable when heated. You then step on the orthotic while it cools to make it best fit your foot. This is a step up from a generic, off the shelf insole, but does not provide much in the way of mechanical correction.
Another way of capturing a mold of the foot is using a foam impression box. You step into the foam and compress it into a mold of your foot. This can result in a good mold but the quality often is variable. It varies based on the skill and attention of the technician taking the mold to ensure your foot is properly placed. There is much room for error and we only utilize it for specific types of orthotics...generally softer custom insoles provided for use by our diabetic patients.
A newer and very promising method of taking a mold is a 3-D scanner. Unfortunately, the scanner still isn't providing the quality and depth of an image that will provide a superior orthotic. For that reason, we take a plaster mold of your foot at Tanglewood Foot Specialists. A plaster mold captures your foot in these most efficient and stable position and ensures an effective orthotic is made.
An orthotic is only as good as how well you are evaluated in the office. Learn how a properly designed custom orthotic can do for you by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Andrew Schneider for a comprehensive evaluation.
Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.