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Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Posted by June on 6/28/99 at 00:00 (008306)

Help...I need some information.....I have been recently told that I have PFM. So far I have had 2 cort. shots, and have purchased a pair of Birkenstocks, have been icing, stretching etc. Some days it appears better and then other days it really hurts again. What I would like to know is this....my pod. has told me that down the road I may have to purchase a pair of ortho's that will cost me approx. $300.00. I have been checking out in the stores around here the various over the counter ortho's such as Spencos, Dr. Scholls, etc. (I haven't bought any yet)and would really like to know if anyone has found ANYTHING out there that has worked well and what you think of perscription ortho's versus over the counter AND which kind you would recommend buying. Please let me know asap as I need to make a decision in the next few days what I am doing. Thanks ahead of time!

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

elaine on 6/28/99 at 00:00 (008309)

Hello,
When i first went to my DR, he told me to buy some DYNASTEPS @ $15.00 a pair. That is the most I have paid for them as I have bought several pairs. They have lasted well over a year. I have found them to be excellent, considering what i paid for them. I NEVER wear shoes without them. Hope this helps. Keep in mind that with this condition... no one thing works for everyone. I feel fortunate that the first thing I tried has been what worked for me..and what I have stayed with. Good luck..

elaine


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Robin on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008329)

When I started out with this, I bought Spencos for about $30. My doctor also had recommended that he make me $300 orthotics.

Spencos really didn't help much. Then I bought Birkenstock shoes and love them. That's all I wear now.

June -- think twice about this 'I have to make a decision in the next two days' feelings. Do you really? Seems to me, a podiatrist will make you orthotics any time -- and you can certainly find another doctor. They are plentiful. Please -- think carefully, don't be rush. Try what you think makes sense for your feet. Everyone with PF is different,and sometimes you need to try a progression of treatments to find the right combination.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

John C. on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008345)

June,
I have had PF for 14 months. During that time, I have used a custom orthotic, Dr. Scholl's Arch Support inserts, and Spenco inserts. I now consider myself cured(maybe). My feet are fairly flat. During the 14 months, I have had the best results from the custom orthotic and the Dr. Scholls. In the first 4 months, I used the Dr. Scholls. That was all that I had at the time and they seemed to help. At around 5 months, my Pod gave me a custom leather like insert. For the next few months, I improved a good bit. Around 2 months ago, my pain had gotten to a fairly low level, but would not just go completely away. I tried to go back to running and had to back off of that. Finally, I thought that I would go back and give the old Dr. Scholls one last try. They seemed to help me to get rid of that last bit of pain. It seems to be 100% gone now. As you can tell, different things have worked for me at different times.

One other thing I would recommend. Wear them in a shoe that does not flex very much, especially in the middle. I discovered last August that my hiking boots were the best thing that I could wear at the time. They were very stiff and would only flex under the ball of the foot. What I discovered was that any shoe that was too flexible increased my pain. I believe that a very flexible shoe causes the plantar to get stretched and adds to the injury. This is one of the advantages of Birks. They are very stiff and keep the plantar in a stable state when walking.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

John


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

June on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008351)

Thanks for all the infor. One more thing...the Dr. Scholls inserts... Were they the DynaSteps? Thanks again. Glad your doing better.

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

June on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008352)

Robin,

Thanks for the infor. The only reason I feel I have to make a decision in the next few days is because the pain is killing me and my Pod. told me it will be at least 3-4 wks. for the orthos to come in once they are ordered and I have to wait at least 2 wks. now before I can even get in for the 1/2hr. appt. it takes to fit me for them before he will even order them...hence the feeling that I can not wait too long on this. I also have Birks and was wondering if you have tried the blue-sole insert I have seen mentioned on here. Thanks again for taking the time to write.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

andi K on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008367)

I have the blue Birk inserts and feel that they give wonderful support. They, too need a little breaking in. They seem to be of such a greater quality than many of the other supports. I don't see that these will break down any time soon. I love how they feel. Good luck!

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Jenny Lewis, in London on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008377)

I agree - don't rush it. Even if you have to put up with the pain for a few days more than you would like, even a few weeks, it will be worth it in the long run, or should I say long hobble. Make sure you get what is right for you, and don't make a hasty decision. If someone (the pod, the doctor? whoever) is putting on the pressure for you to decide, ignore them, and take your time.

jl


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

John C. on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008379)

June,
I think they were called a Heel Guard. They are 3/4 length and have a good arch support. They are soft and work best in my New Balance Running Shoes. I also were them in my work shoes which are Rockport.

Good luck.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Robin on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008386)

Hi June,

I can sympathize with your expressed need to rush. Doctors do make you feel that you absolutely must decide and proceed at once -- lest you waste their time. And pain is no day at the beach.

I myself would like to consider orthotics -- yet I am leery. I know several people who have definitely been helped them and wouldn't live without them. Then there are many others who have bought 2 and 3 pairs of expensive orthotics -- and they sit in dresser drawers.

Here is one of my reasons. I believe that as my feet are today, they are not 'correct.' Clearly, I have plantar fascia problems in both of them. I wonder if making a mold and then an orthotic of what I consider to be problem feet is a smart move. Why have orthotics that are fashioned to problem feet? Many months ago, a woman posted to this board about having chiropractic work done on her feet FIRST, and then having orthotics made. Apparently she had a sizable amount of chiro work done, then had orthotics molded and made -- and was pretty happy. For me, I may consider that route in the future.

No, I haven't tried the Birk insert. I work in a place where I can wear Birks to work, so that's pretty much all I wear. They work real well for me. Good luck whatever you do.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Judy on 7/02/99 at 00:00 (008443)

Can you wear the blue Birk inserts in just about any shoe/sneaker? I need to wear at least casual 'flats' with a 1' heel to work. Do you think these would fit in them or are they just for sneakers? Thanks.

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

andi k on 7/02/99 at 00:00 (008459)

I wear the birk supports in all my shoes except sandals, of course. In one pair of my shoes, the birks made the shoe a little too tight for my foot, but in most others it seems to work. Take a pair of the casual shoes to the store and stick the insert in them and test it out. Good luck!

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

mary on 7/04/99 at 00:00 (008494)

Birkenstock sells shoe inserts - different ones for athletic shoes and dress shoes. They are about $40-$55 and have worked great for me. I pulled out the support cushions in my New Balance tennis shoes (876s which are geared for high arches) and put in the Birkenstock inserts.

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

elaine on 6/28/99 at 00:00 (008309)

Hello,
When i first went to my DR, he told me to buy some DYNASTEPS @ $15.00 a pair. That is the most I have paid for them as I have bought several pairs. They have lasted well over a year. I have found them to be excellent, considering what i paid for them. I NEVER wear shoes without them. Hope this helps. Keep in mind that with this condition... no one thing works for everyone. I feel fortunate that the first thing I tried has been what worked for me..and what I have stayed with. Good luck..

elaine


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Robin on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008329)

When I started out with this, I bought Spencos for about $30. My doctor also had recommended that he make me $300 orthotics.

Spencos really didn't help much. Then I bought Birkenstock shoes and love them. That's all I wear now.

June -- think twice about this 'I have to make a decision in the next two days' feelings. Do you really? Seems to me, a podiatrist will make you orthotics any time -- and you can certainly find another doctor. They are plentiful. Please -- think carefully, don't be rush. Try what you think makes sense for your feet. Everyone with PF is different,and sometimes you need to try a progression of treatments to find the right combination.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

John C. on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008345)

June,
I have had PF for 14 months. During that time, I have used a custom orthotic, Dr. Scholl's Arch Support inserts, and Spenco inserts. I now consider myself cured(maybe). My feet are fairly flat. During the 14 months, I have had the best results from the custom orthotic and the Dr. Scholls. In the first 4 months, I used the Dr. Scholls. That was all that I had at the time and they seemed to help. At around 5 months, my Pod gave me a custom leather like insert. For the next few months, I improved a good bit. Around 2 months ago, my pain had gotten to a fairly low level, but would not just go completely away. I tried to go back to running and had to back off of that. Finally, I thought that I would go back and give the old Dr. Scholls one last try. They seemed to help me to get rid of that last bit of pain. It seems to be 100% gone now. As you can tell, different things have worked for me at different times.

One other thing I would recommend. Wear them in a shoe that does not flex very much, especially in the middle. I discovered last August that my hiking boots were the best thing that I could wear at the time. They were very stiff and would only flex under the ball of the foot. What I discovered was that any shoe that was too flexible increased my pain. I believe that a very flexible shoe causes the plantar to get stretched and adds to the injury. This is one of the advantages of Birks. They are very stiff and keep the plantar in a stable state when walking.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

John


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

June on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008351)

Thanks for all the infor. One more thing...the Dr. Scholls inserts... Were they the DynaSteps? Thanks again. Glad your doing better.

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

June on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008352)

Robin,

Thanks for the infor. The only reason I feel I have to make a decision in the next few days is because the pain is killing me and my Pod. told me it will be at least 3-4 wks. for the orthos to come in once they are ordered and I have to wait at least 2 wks. now before I can even get in for the 1/2hr. appt. it takes to fit me for them before he will even order them...hence the feeling that I can not wait too long on this. I also have Birks and was wondering if you have tried the blue-sole insert I have seen mentioned on here. Thanks again for taking the time to write.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

andi K on 6/29/99 at 00:00 (008367)

I have the blue Birk inserts and feel that they give wonderful support. They, too need a little breaking in. They seem to be of such a greater quality than many of the other supports. I don't see that these will break down any time soon. I love how they feel. Good luck!

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Jenny Lewis, in London on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008377)

I agree - don't rush it. Even if you have to put up with the pain for a few days more than you would like, even a few weeks, it will be worth it in the long run, or should I say long hobble. Make sure you get what is right for you, and don't make a hasty decision. If someone (the pod, the doctor? whoever) is putting on the pressure for you to decide, ignore them, and take your time.

jl


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

John C. on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008379)

June,
I think they were called a Heel Guard. They are 3/4 length and have a good arch support. They are soft and work best in my New Balance Running Shoes. I also were them in my work shoes which are Rockport.

Good luck.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Robin on 6/30/99 at 00:00 (008386)

Hi June,

I can sympathize with your expressed need to rush. Doctors do make you feel that you absolutely must decide and proceed at once -- lest you waste their time. And pain is no day at the beach.

I myself would like to consider orthotics -- yet I am leery. I know several people who have definitely been helped them and wouldn't live without them. Then there are many others who have bought 2 and 3 pairs of expensive orthotics -- and they sit in dresser drawers.

Here is one of my reasons. I believe that as my feet are today, they are not 'correct.' Clearly, I have plantar fascia problems in both of them. I wonder if making a mold and then an orthotic of what I consider to be problem feet is a smart move. Why have orthotics that are fashioned to problem feet? Many months ago, a woman posted to this board about having chiropractic work done on her feet FIRST, and then having orthotics made. Apparently she had a sizable amount of chiro work done, then had orthotics molded and made -- and was pretty happy. For me, I may consider that route in the future.

No, I haven't tried the Birk insert. I work in a place where I can wear Birks to work, so that's pretty much all I wear. They work real well for me. Good luck whatever you do.


Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

Judy on 7/02/99 at 00:00 (008443)

Can you wear the blue Birk inserts in just about any shoe/sneaker? I need to wear at least casual 'flats' with a 1' heel to work. Do you think these would fit in them or are they just for sneakers? Thanks.

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

andi k on 7/02/99 at 00:00 (008459)

I wear the birk supports in all my shoes except sandals, of course. In one pair of my shoes, the birks made the shoe a little too tight for my foot, but in most others it seems to work. Take a pair of the casual shoes to the store and stick the insert in them and test it out. Good luck!

Re: Over the counter arch /heel supports ...what kind???

mary on 7/04/99 at 00:00 (008494)

Birkenstock sells shoe inserts - different ones for athletic shoes and dress shoes. They are about $40-$55 and have worked great for me. I pulled out the support cushions in my New Balance tennis shoes (876s which are geared for high arches) and put in the Birkenstock inserts.