At Heartland Foot and Ankle Associates, we aim to make sure patients fully understand their condition and treatment plan so they can be active partners in their podiatric care. For example, we relate the different levels of inserts to cars.
1. Level 1: Over the counter inserts, comparable to a Chevy Aveo
2. Level 2: Medical grade inserts, comparable to Chevy Impala
3. Level 3: Custom orthotics, comparable to Cadillac
A Chevy Aveo is your standard economy class car- it will basically just get you from point A to point B. But, it’s not as reliable as other vehicles, and won’t have power steering, power windows, etc. Like the Aveo, over the counter inserts will give you cushion, but don’t offer any support. Due to the lack of support, they usually need to be replaced every few weeks.
A step up from the Aveo is the Impala. Now, you not only have a reliable vehicle to get from point A to point B, but you also have air conditioning, power steering, power windows, and a CD player! The next step up from over the counter inserts is medical grade inserts. The main difference between over the counter inserts and medical grade inserts is support. Medical grade will support your arch and foot unlike over the counter. Medical grade inserts also last longer than over the counter inserts. Medical grade inserts usually last around 6 months.
Our office’s recommend ‘mid-grade’ are Powersteps. Powersteps are a podiatrist designed medical grade insert that not only cushion but provide real support and stability to the entire foot optimizing pain relief, proper foot posture and mechanics, and injury prevention. Powersteps are made up of a unique 4 step design.
1. A strong, medical-grade polypropylene shell (arch support) is calibrated for optimal flexibility and support.
2. Next, a double-layered, shock absorbing Poron/EVA cushion casing provides maximum comfort and absorbs shock.
3. Then, a heel cradle and Comfort Cushion stabilizes and protects the heel.
4. A heat and slip reducing anti-microbial fabric tops it all off.
5. The semi-flexible plastic shell encapsulated between layers of luxurious foam cushioning gives the Powerstep difference- flexible enough to be comfortable yet firm enough to achieve proper support.
Then, after the mid-grade Impala you move up to the luxury class- the Caddy! In addition to all the features and longevity the Impala had, you now get 24” rims, keyless entry, automatic start, and a DVD system! The luxury class vehicle will also last longer and have fewer problems compared to the mid-grade. The luxury insert is the custom orthotic.
Custom orthotics give you cushion, support, and-best of all- make you walk the right way. Custom Molded Orthotics change the way you walk. Orthotics properly modify your body’s alignment including hips and shoulders, often eliminating whole body pain. Orthotics decrease pain by changing the way forces act on the foot- they change the way the front and back of your foot relate to each other.
Economy: Mid-Grade: Luxory:
Over the Counter Medical Grade Custom Orthotics
Cushion Support Corrected alignment