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Best Insoles for Nurses to Relieve Fatigue

a man with a mustache and a vest
By Janik Sundstrom
Siphokazi Mdidimba
Edited by Siphokazi Mdidimba

Published July 1, 2022.

Nurse holding out an insole in each hand

The shoe nurses wear daily to complete a long shift on the feet are often not supportive nor comfortable when worn for a lengthy period. Nurses need orthotics to support their feet due to fatigue developing in the feet throughout a lengthy shift, and often with very little time to rest. Nurses report that pain and discomfort are common complaints and often related to poor shoe choice. 

Nurses spend often up to an excess of 12 hours on their feet during a single shift, causing a fair amount of daily strain. In some hospital settings around the world, some nurses are unable to make a choice on shoes that best suits their specific needs. In other settings, nurses have a bit more freedom regarding shoe choice to meet their specific needs.

Benefits of Insoles for Nurses

  1. Arch support Insoles inserted into your shoes will greatly benefit your feet by supporting the arches during the day. The benefits of arch supports are that they prevent the arches from dropping as the muscles of the foot fatigue and pronation from occurring in the ankle complex. This can lead to a variety of complications if not addressed in severe cases. This is why it is important to know what is going on with your feet so that you know if you'll need arch support or not.
  2. Comfort Insoles can be extremely helpful in improving your overall experience of comfort throughout the day. Insoles play a role in redistributing the weight evenly throughout the sole, while also providing a cushioned, shock-absorbing surface to protect the foot from shock when striking the ground while stepping and walking. 
  3. Bunion prevention Unnatural weight translation over the inner surface of the forefoot can be limited, which puts strain on the base of the big toe eventually leading to misalignment of the big toe and pain. 
  4. Heel support The additional cushioning from the insoles can be extremely helpful in preventing heel pain by reducing the shock placed through the structures around the heel. These can be inserted into the shoe to protect the heel daily. 
  5. Plantar fasciitis Orthotics can prevent inflammation in the sole associated with plantar fasciitis from developing, especially in shoes that have a raised heel. Orthotics and a change in footwear help manage this condition.

Features of Great Insoles for Nurses

When looking for insoles to best suit your daily needs, finding an orthotic that accommodates your specific needs using custom orthotics is recommended. Fortunately, there are different types of orthotics available in the market. It is important to determine what your main complaint is regarding your feet throughout the day. Is it a marked big toe shift towards the inside as seen in bunions potentially with pain or am I experiencing pain around the heel? Do I need metatarsal support or another form of orthotic? These can all be managed effectively using custom orthotics in a relatively cost-effective way. Try to choose an orthotic insole that best suits your needs. 

The orthotics should correctly fit within your shoes. Orthotics that are too big could cause discomfort in the foot as the edges might curl up against the side of the foot. Orthotics that are too small might not support the entire foot, with the toes pointing over the edge of the orthotics. If the orthotics are too small they may tend to slide within the shoe while walking.

Best Insoles for Nurses

A strong, durable, everyday orthotic is a great choice for people wearing the same shoes for extended periods, as some nurses may do. Some may prefer memory foam insoles, and others gel insoles. Upstep has a range of custom orthotics to best meet your orthotics needs. Custom orthotics from Upstep are cast in the comfort of your own home and have a 120-day money-back guarantee.