Your back problem may be caused by the way you walk. If your gait is abnormal, such as if your feet pronate or you have excessive heel pain, then your spine is also affected. If this is the case, then orthotics may be able to help alleviate the pain. Here is more information about how your feet affect your back and how orthotics can help alleviate some of your back, as well as your foot, pain.

How Does Walking Affect the Back?

When you walk, the muscles in your legs and lower back are all engaged to provide a range of motion. All of this puts a great deal of strain on your back even when your feet are in perfect condition. However, most people have some sort of abnormality in their gaits such as over or under pronation and heel pain. This pain or pronation may throw your legs, hips, and back out of perfect alignment and cause exceptional stress on your back muscles.

What Foot Problems Make Back Problems Worse?

One of the most common foot problems that affect the back is incorrect pronation. Pronation is the angle of your foot when it hits the ground. You may under-pronate, or roll your foot too much inward, or over-supinate, which is when you walk on the outside portion of your foot. Bunions, or swelling around the big toe, can contribute to pronation or supination problems. Plantar fasciitis causes pain in the heel or arch that affects the angle of your legs as you walk. In all these cases, you are likely walking in a way that puts extra pressure on your back.

How Can Orthotics Help With Back Problems?

With mild to moderate foot problems, orthotics help by balancing out the feet so that you do not pronate or supinate abnormally. Orthotics also help cushion bunions as well as the bottom of the foot and heel to keep your foot supported and alleviate the pain that causes you to walk abnormally. These devices help alleviate the back stress enough so that it can heal and reduce the pain and inflammation.

Make sure you are evaluated by a physician to determine the cause of your back pain, first, before moving on to orthotics. Some back problems are caused by arthritis or muscular problems unrelated to your feet. Have those treated first before addressing any foot or walking problems.

However, orthotics can go a long way to alleviating back pain if you have foot problems. Plus, your feet will feel better, too. For more information about the different types of orthotics, or to order some that are customized for your specific foot problems, then contact a custom orthotics center for more information.