“Oftentimes, you can get just as good of a result with an off-the-shelf solution as a custom insert. Those are not very expensive, so they’re worth trying if you’re having minor problems,” she says.
If you have more significant foot pain or concerns, it’s best to see a health care provider who specializes in foot and ankle issues, she says. Severe problems may require a custom-molded orthotic or one that’s specially designed for people with certain conditions, such as diabetes.
Sometimes foot pain is related to factors such as weight gain, a change in activity or change in health status. Sine says an insert may not address pain resulting from those issues.
Physical therapy can also address painful foot conditions, she says. Stretching and strengthening exercises and manual therapy to improve the mobility of joints and tissues in the lower extremities can help reduce foot pain and discomfort.
“It’s easier to treat a problem the sooner it comes on rather than letting it linger,” she says.