The Planovalgus deformity of the foot represents a violation of the architecture, which manifests itself in a change in the height of the arch and the curvature of the entire axis. It is accompanied by a curvature of the toe and heel towards the outer edge. The middle part of the foot is shifted inwards. When both feet are next to each other, they look like the letter X. The pathology is accompanied by an uncomfortable gait, increased fatigue and pain in the legs.
Most of the time, this pathology has innate causes. It is acquired a little less often. The congenital deformity is usually diagnosed in a child by an orthopedic surgeon during a routine examination in the first year of life. The prevention and correction of such a disease is limited to regular massages, physical therapy exercises, physical therapy and the wearing of special orthopedic shoes.
What role do orthopedic shoes play?
One of the pathogenetic mechanisms associated with foot deformity is the weakening of the ligamentous apparatus. Its functions include fixing all structural elements of the foot of a child and an adult in the correct position. When the ligaments of the foot perform their functions incorrectly or inadequately, it leads to the development of muscle weakness, instability of the joints of the foot and ankle, and progressive deformity of the lower extremity.
In this regard, the main purpose of orthopedic shoes with hallux valgus is to strengthen the ligamentous apparatus of the foot and ankle area. The product was developed to distribute the load on the foot when walking and to bring the foot into a physiological position. Thus, the lower extremity assumes the correct position and can fully perform its functions.
How to choose the right shoes
Congenital hallux valgus most commonly occurs in childhood. In adult women, this pathology can be acquired in nature and caused by wearing a tight, uncomfortable model, prolonged stay on the feet in shoes or boots with tight toes.
If you don't pay attention to shoes and continue to wear tight models, the problem will only get worse over time. As this increases the width of the shoe, the patient can have significant difficulty in choosing the appropriate option. The woman begins to worry about severe pain in the foot, inflammation, and calluses. A "bump" forms on the leg, the actual joint head.
To solve this problem and alleviate your condition, it is recommended to choose orthopedic shoes for yourself. Today this can even be done through online shops. When making your selection, consider the following parameters:
- The sole height must be taken into account. For a woman with hallux valgus, shoes with a high heel should be chosen. This relieves strain on the ankles, knee joints and spine. With parallel shoes you can distribute the load evenly and correctly on all points of the foot.
- It is not recommended to wear heels over 3 cm - this can make the situation worse. On the other hand, a completely flat sole is also bad for the foot.
- The outsole should be made of light and elastic material. It should be stiffer in the heel area and a little softer towards the toe. This would be great for the foot.
- The upper part of the product must be made of natural material. Shoes made from natural suede or leather fit the foot very comfortably and do not chafe the skin, while excess moisture can evaporate. For the same purpose, a hygienic insole is used, which has a hygroscopic and antiseptic effect. This avoids the development of the inflammatory process and the addition of infection.
- If you are buying a finished rather than a bespoke model, look out for a large number of size adjusters - fasteners, Velcro fasteners, laces, elastic inserts - that will perfectly fit the size of your feet and prevent friction and calluses.
- A special orthopedic insole is required. Such an insole should serve as a tension support and prevent the arch of the foot from sagging.
Special properties of orthopedic shoes
There are two types of orthopedic women's shoes for correcting foot deformities: series or custom-made products. Series products can be bought ready-made in specialist shops or orthopedic workshops. Serial orthopedic shoes can be used in the following situations:
- If the deformity of the foot is small.
- When hallux valgus was diagnosed in the earliest stages of development.
- As a preventive measure for women who have a hereditary predisposition to ligament weakness.
- In children, mass-produced orthopedic shoes are used in rickets and other pathological processes that can cause weakness of the ligamentous apparatus and gait disorders.
Mass-produced footwear only brings the desired effect if it is combined with other correction methods - massage, physiotherapy exercises, physiotherapy, regular intake of vitamin preparations.
When buying ready-to-wear shoes for mass production, make sure that they exactly meet all existing hygiene standards and requirements for these products.
These shoes are usually made after taking the appropriate measurements of each parameter and making a plaster cast of the limb.
The modern orthopedic industry often uses a technique to identify the individual features and shape of a child's foot. All parameters are recorded with a special device, and the doctor can use the data obtained to correct the treatment regimen and establish the correct installation of the joints.
The manufacture of such shoes requires several biometric indicators of the foot.
The following conditions can become indications for the use of such shoes:
- Significant deformity of the feet.
- Combination of hallux valgus with other defects of the musculoskeletal system - scoliosis, dysplasia of the hip joints, etc.
- Ineffectiveness of other treatments or contraindications for them.
- Ineffectiveness when wearing serial orthopedic shoes
Orthopedic shoes for women or children can be ordered in specialized workshops or salons. The efficiency of such products is many times higher than that of their serial counterparts. It is made taking into account the individual characteristics of the foot and plaster casts. This leads to a significant acceleration of the treatment process for hallux valgus and correct foot placement.
Custom shoe requirements
When manufacturing custom-made orthopedic women's shoes, the following requirements must be met:
- A firm back is required. Its size should depend on the severity of the deformation of the person who will wear these shoes.
- Taking into account the degree of sagging of the arch of the foot, an orthopedic insole is selected for hallux valgus. The hygienic insole must not be glued on so that it can be exchanged at any time.
- The outsole should be firm but flexible and non-slip when wearing shoes. The hygienic insole must be easy to remove so that it can be replaced if necessary.
- The heel should have a special beveled shape to compensate for the inward flexion of the midsole. This heel is called "Thomas' heel".
- To prevent the forefoot from moving forward while walking, the toe of the orthopedic shoe should be firm and closed during valgus placement.
Given that the treatment of hallux valgus is a very long process, it is necessary to choose shoes made from natural materials that provide the foot with adequate ventilation and have adequate hygroscopicity.
To avoid adding fungal or bacterial infections, shoes should be hygienically cleaned and handled regularly. It can be washed and disinfected.
In the manufacture of a product for a child, there should be no elements that easily stretch, loosen at the most inopportune moment, etc. In particular, it is not acceptable to replace the lacing with elastic bands or fragile Velcro. This can lead to insufficient fixation of the child's foot and thus the entire therapeutic effect can be negated or significantly reduced.
Summer and winter shoes naturally have significant differences. In this case, the thickness of the sole and the insole differ significantly, as well as the density of the materials and the degree of insulation. But the main requirement must be observed - the maintenance of the orthopedic properties of the product. You should therefore contact a quality-assured and certified shoe manufacturer.