Difference Between Shoe Inserts and Custom Foot Orthotics

Shoe Inserts are any kind of non-prescription foot support designed to be worn inside a shoe. Pre-packaged custom-fit and custom-made arch supports are considered shoe inserts that are sold in grocery stores, malls, television and online.


No matter what is stated in the ads if the device has not been prescribed by a doctor and crafted for your specific foot it is considered a shoe insert.


Shoe inserts can be very helpful for a variety of foot ailments, including flat arches and foot and leg pain. They can cushion your feet, provide comfort, and support your arches, but they cannot correct biomechanical foot problems or cure long-standing foot issues.

Custom Foot Orthotics are prescribed by your physician for specific foot conditions that cannot be treated with shoe inserts.


Custom foot orthotics are designed and fabricated to support and protect your feet.


Custom foot orthotics can only be fabricated after a thorough evaluation of your feet, ankles and legs to address your foot problems and pathology.


Prescription orthotics are divided into two categories:

  • Functional foot orthotics are designed to control abnormal motion and address specific injuries like plantar fasciitis, shin splints or tendinitis.

  • Accommodative foot orthotics are softer and meant to provide additional cushioning and support to address diabetic foot ulcers, painful calluses on the bottom of the foot and other uncomfortable conditions.


Custom foot orthotics cost significantly more than shoe inserts but the additional cost is usually well worth it. Unlike shoe inserts custom foot orthotics are molded to fit each individual foot and are also made of high quality material to last many years when cared for properly.


Insurance companies rarely pay for non-diabetic custom foot orthotics even when prescribed by a physician.

Caldwell Prosthetics and Orthotics, LLC is committed to provideng high quality custom foot orthotics.


Please contact our office today to set-up an appointment.

Where to Find Us:

330 Industrial Boulevard
Suite 110
McKinney, Texas 75069

Office: (972) 548 7707

Toll-Free: (888) 610-6844

Fax: (972) 548-7739

Business Hours:

Monday through Friday

9 am to 5 pm

Closed for lunch

12 to 1:30 pm


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