Little Basics that People should know about Orthotics

By Dona June 7, 2017

Orthotics may sound like a strange term to many people. In fact, only a small population of Canadian people know what the term means. For starters, this term represents a branch of medicine that specializes in the application, manufacture as well as the design of orthoses. Orthoses, on the other hand, brings about a new term. It’s used to represent a device that supports the skeletal system and the neuromuscular system. The medical clinician responsible for these processes is known as an orthotist. These processes include management, manufacture and even prescription.

Uses of orthoses

While they may be used for many purposes, common uses of orthoses include restricting the movement of a person in a certain direction, helping the involved person move and even restrain or immobilize a joint. Orthoses can also be used to restrict the weight bearing forces and even assist in the healing process especially if a cast in place has been removed. Finally, they can be used to correct the shape of body structures with the aim of reducing pain to the body.

Origin of Orthotics and who needs them

While orthotics may have many uses, they are generally for people suffering from cerebral palsy and spinal bifida. They can also be used by people who have suffered from stroke as well as spinal cord injury. On a lesser serious matter, they have been known to improve performance when it comes to sport. These devices were introduced by extensive research in physiology and anatomy. Input from engineering, biomechanics, and biomechanics also played an important role for the existence of these devices. If you visit the Bramalea Chiropractic website, you may be able to find more information.

Role of technology

The introduction of plastics meant that it would be easy to make these devices. It also led to the idea of plaster of Paris around the body part to be restrained or reinforced. Advancement in technology has led to the introduction of things like CNC machines, CAD and CAM machines as well as terms like 3D printing. While plastics are the commonly used materials in the manufacture of these devices, other materials that can also be used include fabric, EVA, elastics, metals, carbon fiber, and even thermoplastics. They can also be made from a combination of these materials. It’s also important to note that some of these devices can be bought from the local retailer while others have to be prescribed by a qualified physician. Braces available in the counter come in different sizes and are just basic equipment.

Types of Orthoses

Orthoses are designed depending on where they will be used. For this reason, they can be classified as upper limb orthoses and lower limb orthoses. These two classifications result to other lesser classification such as ankle-foot orthoses, knee-ankle-foot orthoses, and knee orthoses. There are also other orthoses referred to as prophylactic and rehabilitation orthoses.


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