Chronic foot problems can be debilitating at any stage of life. If you experience pain whenever you walk or move, it may be time to consider getting a pair of orthotics: customized, moulded inserts for your shoes that help correct biomechanical foot problems. At Island Foot Clinics, we create prescription inserts from 3D scans of your feet in order to best match your body and realign your feet so that you can move comfortably once again.

Should I Get Orthotics?

Biomechanical issues of the feet aren’t just confined to the ankles and below. They can also affect your legs, knees, hips, and back, leading to more pain and discomfort as well as reduced quality of life. Chronic foot problems can contribute to more serious musculoskeletal breakdowns, especially later in life.

Wearing functional inserts to treat underlying foot conditions can reduce or remove the need for surgical procedures as a solution. If the event that these types of conditions do require corrective surgery, our doctors still highly recommend orthotics, as patients who use them before surgery are much less likely to see their symptoms return.  

Unsure whether prescription inserts would be right for you? These are just some of the conditions that our doctors can treat with prescription inserts, often providing total relief of symptoms:

Pronation and Supination

Collapsed arches that roll inward (pronation) and raised arches that roll outward (supination) are genetically inherited, and these structural issues can lead to further misalignments in the joints of the foot. These kinds of underlying mechanical problems will not typically resolve on their own without treatment.

Plantar Fasciitis

This type of injury affects one or more of the five ligaments that run from the heel to the ball of the foot. It causes pain under the heel and arches, which is often worse in the mornings.


These bone deformities happen at the base joint of the big toe, and they occur when the big toe is misaligned. These enlarged protrusions often become inflamed and irritated when they chafe against shoes, and this can make every step painful. Extreme joint swelling can even cause the big toe to overlap over other toes in a condition known as Hallux Valgus.


If structural problems put too much pressure on the ball of the foot, the tissue that covers the nerve between the third and fourth toe can become bruised. Injuries like this can sometimes scar. The resulting enlarged scar tissue around the nerve is the neuroma, which can cause burning, tingling, numbing, or shooting sensations up and down the foot.


This overuse injury is most common to the joint that connects the second toe to the foot. If the ligament here is injured, the connective tissue can become weakened and inflamed, leading to pain and irritation. Other podiatric conditions, such as bunions and weak arches, can contribute to this condition and make it more likely to occur.

Calcaneal Apophysitis

This condition, otherwise known as Sever’s Disease, is an inflammation of the heel’s growth plate caused by repetitive stress. Calcaneal apophysitis is most common in children age fourteen and under, because at that stage, the bone has not finished developing and the area is weaker. However, adults can still suffer from this ailment.

Restoring Mobility

Chronic pain can be frustrating, reducing your mobility while creating stress and fatigue. In particular, foot conditions and injuries can take away freedom of movement, affecting everything from work to recreation. If you find that you can no longer move the way you used to due to foot disorders, it may be time to consider podiatric treatment.

Prescription inserts can restore that lost mobility by treating the problems at their source. Foot issues can impact the entire body, so treating these effectively can help your whole body return to its best, most functional state.

Our inserts are designed to absorb shock from up to four times your body weight, so that you can run and walk to a fuller extent. Once your body has adjusted to corrections, you should enjoy a much greater range of movement than you had while your conditions were untreated.

What’s the Difference Between Functional Orthotics and Store-Bought Inserts?

Although it may be tempting to grab a generic pair of shoe inserts at your local drugstore to alleviate your foot pain, think twice before you buy. These commercially made products may provide some shock absorption and comfort in the short term, but they are not designed for your body’s specific needs. They will often break down and lose effectiveness quickly.

Functional inserts are medically manufactured to correct your individual biomechanical problems. Our doctors will identify underlying issues that may be causing you pain, and the inserts you’ll get will be designed exactly to address them. They don’t just accommodate—they correct.

How to Get What You Need

A consultation with our podiatrists will address any foot conditions you may have. If your doctor recommends prescription inserts and you choose to have them made, it’s a simple process.

All you have to do is stand on our foot scanner, and the device captures a three-dimensional image of your feet. The image created from the scan will be perfectly mapped to your feet and thus to your biomechanical issues that need correcting. The scan goes to our labs, and after that, it’s only a wait of two to three weeks before you can come back for your fitting.

Our doctors will also work with you to make sure your inserts accommodate your wardrobe as much as possible. We understand that men and women alike have different footwear for different occasions, and we want you to be fully treated in as many situations as possible. Your body will need to adjust to a new and healthier posture slowly, in increments, and our doctors will monitor the process. Each time, they’ll make sure your inserts still fit and provide the symptom relief that you need. The inserts are made to last through at least a year of wear and tear. Patients are advised to visit us once a year after the initial adjustment period to make sure they are still providing the optimal amount of relief and care.

Paying for Your Inserts

The standard cost for a prescription is covered under most insurance policies. This fee covers your initial biomechanical exam, the scanning and laboratory costs, and shipping costs. All patients will be given a receipt and a letter after purchase, which can be submitted to your insurance company for reimbursement.

Our Clinics

Island Foot Clinics currently operates in ten locations throughout Canada and British Columbia, with offices in Kelowna, Victoria, Nanaimo, Prince George, Terrace, Williams Lake, Campbell River, Osoyoos, Kamloops, and Salmon Arm.  

For more information about our clinic’s services, call (250) 385-3668. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have and get you on the way to your first appointment. Wearing orthotics today could make all the difference in your quality of life down the line, so don’t wait—contact us today!