Adjusting to Orthotics - What to Expect While You Break Them In

Posted by Orthotics Direct on 2020 Nov 20th

When you get your first pair of orthotics, most people open the box with excitement, eager to relieve painful, ongoing foot issues. While wearing supportive inserts will ultimately help, adjusting to orthotics can be unfamiliar territory.

For some people, the orthotics break-in period can cause discomfort as they adjust to wearing shoes that offer more support or gait control. Regardless of what orthotics you choose, the adjustment period is temporary and will lead to greater control over your pronation and gait, improving pain and minimizing discomfort throughout your lower body.

Today, we’ll guide you through the orthotics break-in period and discuss the steps that any new orthotics-wearer should take when breaking in new orthotics.

How Long Does It Take to Get Used to Orthotics?

Most pedorthists and podiatrists generally agree that the answer to the common question, “How long does it take to get used to orthotics?” is about two weeks. During this time, you should note any pain you experience. If it persists longer than two weeks, bring it up with your doctor or the orthotic device maker.

When you purchase a pair of custom orthotics, you’re receiving a carefully cast device made to your exact measurements. As we make it to your measurements, buying a custom orthotic insert will help minimize your foot pain during the initial break-in period.

If you were to opt for an over-the-counter orthotic that a manufacturer made in a standard size, it may be painful and will not be as effective in the long run.

What to Expect During the Orthotics Break-In Period

When you receive a new orthotic device, the first thing you need to do is make sure it fits securely into your chosen shoe, and it helps to minimize any discomfort and pain.

At Orthotics Direct, we ensure a good fit every time by offering orthotics packaged with our favourite brands of shoes, providing monetary savings and convenience for our customers. Before your new orthotic device leaves our facility, we’ll fit it securely into your new shoes, so it’s ready to wear as soon as you open the box.

When you first get your orthotics, it’s not uncommon to feel that the device is stiff and inflexible. This feeling will dissipate as you “break-in” your orthotic, and the soft tissue on your feet acclimatizes to the firmer sole, supportive arch height, and other features of the orthotic device.

Generally, the pain should ease the more you wear your orthotics. If you have pain that persists longer than two weeks or continues to get worse with time, consult your doctor right away.

A Guide to Breaking in New Orthotics

The best way to minimize foot pain after wearing orthotics is to gradually work up to wearing them, helping your feet adjust so that you won’t experience as much pain and discomfort.

Start by wearing them for one hour a day. Keep adding an extra hour every day until you’re up to 7 hours daily by the end of the first week. By the end of the two week adjustment period, you should be comfortable wearing your orthotics all day.

The most important thing is to listen to your body. If you feel comfortable after Day 4 or 5 and want to wear your orthotics more, go ahead. Never force your body into something uncomfortable.

Get Comfortable Orthotics from Orthotics Direct

At Orthotics Direct, our technicians cast all our custom orthotics using either a digital or foam cast. Using our foam impression kit or our easy digital process, customers send us their precise measurements, along with any information about their feet we need to know. Since we make our orthotics using these detailed casts, it’s easy to create a comfortable orthotic that gives you support precisely where you need it most.


If you’re not satisfied with your product for any reason, send it back, and we’ll fix it. No questions asked. Our100% satisfaction guarantee is always there for every customer.