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Can Orthotics Cause Knee Pain?

Learn about how to use orthotics correctly, and how incorrectly using them can lead to serious health conditions like knee pain.

a man in a white shirt and blue and pink suspenders
By Babafemi Adebajo
Joel Taylor
Edited by Joel Taylor

Published December 29, 2021.

It is impossible to experience pain anywhere in the body without impacting your quality of life. As a result, anything that causes pain relief also improves the quality of life. Like many types of pain, knee pain is amenable with orthotics. While there may be some initial discomfort after using orthotics, correct usage of orthotics guarantees a pain-free experience.

How Orthotics Can Cause Knee Pain

In the same way that using orthotics correctly can relieve pain, orthotics that are incorrectly used or poorly designed can cause pain. They can give a false sense of security, which can make one engage in strenuous activities that can worsen the leg and exacerbate the pain. Over-the-counter orthotics are implicated in this class of orthotics as they simply do not have the capabilities of treating every individual and unique foot.

Side Effects of Incorrect Orthotics

When not used appropriately, orthotics can result in notable side effects like increased muscle soreness, altered body mechanics, and compensatory injuries.

Likewise, ill-fitting orthotics can distort the positioning of the foot, cause a shift in balance and posture, and affect the alignment of the knee and the rest of the kinetic chain. Thus, it is advised that you only wear prescribed and custom-designed orthotics.

The Importance of Using Your Orthotics Correctly

It takes your body time to adjust to the introduction of custom orthotics, what is known as the break-in period. During this time, you should only wear orthotics for about an hour. You can increase the duration progressively as they become easier to use. To ensure that they last long enough, you can reduce wear and tear by cleaning regularly with a damp wipe.

If your orthotics are custom-designed for you, and you use them correctly, then you can kiss pain in your knee goodbye.