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Mini Series: Cringe and Create - Orthotics

On this last Thursday of June I wanted to really showcase the idea that creativity isn't limited to artistic pursuits. One of the most creative things I do everyday is my day job. I work in pedorthics - lower limb care from the knee down focusing on custom made orthotics, orthopedic shoes, ankle and knee bracing and compression.

Custom made orthotics keep me problem solving creatively, whether it be a brand new pair, a replacement, or an adjustment - there are so many material properties to be aware of, so many tricks of the trade to learn and ways to solve the same problem.

Most recently I have moved to a different clinic where I am both the assessor and the technician making the orthotic with my own two hands and a grinder. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, the lab looks like an arts and crafts workshop. Bright materials line the walls in bins, various cutting instruments and insanely strong glue.

This adjustment was for plantar fasciitis and heel spurs on the plantar surface of the heel - the SACH heel - basically a hole in the heel of the orthotic filled with soft materials to cushion the the painful area to reduce pressure and pain and allow for healing. This was the first time I have actually done one, and it was a blast!

Though it may not look perfect, the more I'm in the lab, the more I know I will improve in my technique and better apply the principles of off loading in a more aesthetically pleasing manner. (This is without the top cover to hide all the glue).

I hope you enjoy the evolution of open hole to fully cushioned SACH heel! Remember, creativity isn't only for art, it is also a practical problem solving skill and makes any career more enjoyable.

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