There are many reasons that a podiatrist or other health professional may like to offload the foot or part of the foot. Offloading means having the weight off the foot. This is needed when the greater load or stress is leading to the foot condition. This could be as simple as a corn or it might be as critical as an ulcer in somebody with all forms of diabetes. Should it be a bone and joint problem that requires some time where there isn't any stress on it that can help it get better. Among the big issues with treating foot issues is the fact that we still need to walk on it in order to get about and conduct our everyday living. If it was, for instance, a sore elbow, it really is much simpler to quit making use of it. This will make the managing of foot problems more difficult and the need to work with various offloading approaches.
There are numerous different methods to offload the foot. The most widespread and oldest is possibly the use of podiatry felt. This is generally self adhesive which is cut to design so that it fits around the area of the high force instead of over it. Because of this the strain is removed from the region. Commonly, tape is also useful to help to keep the padding in the appropriate location. The foot have to be kept dry and if needed the felt may be swapped out every few days. Podiatry felt is likewise reasonably inexpensive in comparison to other off-loading methods. The felt is typically useful for smaller parts which need offloading like a corn, an ulcer or something like a sesamoiditis which is a painful condition with the small bones beneath the big toe joint.
One more popular method of offloading will be the usage of foot orthotics. A foot orthotic which is created to the form of the feet, distributes the load away evenly on the whole foot, so can aid in reducing the stress on an area which has too much and distribute it to other regions of the feet. In some circumstances, hollows or divots can be cut in the foot orthotic to help off load a painful location. The foot supports may either be made to order or of the pre-made variety which may be modified to match the feet more precisely.
With the far more severe situations, the best way to offload a foot that has an ulcer is to try using a total contact cast or one of the comparable premade walking splints. If the concern is a bone and joint one, then a moon boot or walking support works extremely well. These types of items are very effective at offloading and so are widely used by podiatry practitioners as well as other health professionals that take care of the foot and lower limb conditions. They do make walking a bit more difficult, but if that can motivate the user to walk less then that is a good thing. Occasionally that limp that the splint brings about can lead to other issues in the hip and back and there also can be a higher possibility for falls, so it needs to be managed properly.