Information for parents and carers
This leaflet can be made available in other formats including large print, CD and Braille and in languages other than English, upon request.
Your child has been prescribed Orthotic footwear. Orthotic footwear is provided to treat a number of conditions however; its main role is to offer increased support and stability of the foot and ankle.
What benefits will Orthotic Footwear offer?
- Improved foot and ankle control.
- A wide heel and sole which offers a more stable base of support.
- A secure lace or Velcro fastening.
- A supportive moulded insole to help stabilise the foot structures.
What should I expect from the Orthotic Footwear?
When your child is first provided with their Orthotic footwear their Orthotist, Orthotic Therapy Assistant or Paediatric Physiotherapist, Paediatric Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner will ensure the fit is correct. They will also ensure the footwear allows for growth, as your child matures.
Your child’s clinician will explain how to don (put on) the footwear correctly and how to monitor your child’s growth in relation to their footwear. Your child’s clinician will also provide you with the wearing time instructions and it is highly advised that these be followed.
Initially your child may feel their Orthotic footwear are heavy and clumsier than their usual footwear and this is due to the increased support and rigidity of the Orthotic footwear.
With time, your child should naturally adjust to the change in footwear style and the benefits of their footwear prescription will start to become noticeable.
How often should your child’s Orthotic Footwear be worn?
When first provided with Orthotic footwear these should initially be worn for approximately 30 minutes to one hour, to allow adjustment.
On removal of your child’s Orthotic footwear after their first trial, you may start to increase the wear time by approximately one hour per day. It is important however to continue regular skin checks.
What happens if your child experiences pressure or discomfort when wearing their Orthotic Footwear?
Please ensure you have followed the wear time schedule provided by your child’s clinician.
If you have followed the advised wear time schedule and problems with pressure or discomfort are still present, please contact the Orthotic Service.
Please try the Orthotic footwear for at least 1-2 weeks before contacting.
How do you care for your child’s foorwear?
Your child will be provided with ONE pair of footwear from the NHS Orthotic Service. It is your responsibility to care for and look after your child’s footwear.
Your child’s footwear will be replaced when they are overly worn, too small or no longer suitable.
Leather footwear should be cleaned regularly and polished if possible.
Suede footwear should be brushed regularly. Spraying with a protection product will also offer better protection from weather conditions. Do not wash your child’s footwear in a washing machine.
Can I get my child’s Orthotic Footwear repaired?
If the sole of your child’s footwear is damaged or worn, your local cobbler can repair these.
If there is a manufacturing fault, or your child’s footwear has a special adaptation, the repairs can be completed through your NHS Orthotic Service.
You may be required to purchase a pair of supportive footwear that may be used when/if repairs are required to your child’s Orthotic footwear.
How do you monitor your child’s growth and footwear sizing?
During your child’s footwear fitting appointment your Orthotist, Orthotic Therapy Assistant, Paediatric Physiotherapist or Paediatric Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner will have explained how to monitor your child’s growth.
When the footwear is provided, there will be a good amount of growth room for your child’s age but this will need to be monitored.
You should assess your child’s footwear size and fit approximately every 3 – 4 weeks.
To assess the fit of your child’s footwear you should remove the insole and place your child’s foot onto this. Ensure the heel is sitting correctly and the foot is not twisted.
When your child’s foot is in position, assess the gap between the end of the insole and the end of your child’s longest toe.
Your clinician will place a mark on the insoles, which will be your reference for growth. When your child’s longest toe reaches this mark, you should contact your Orthotic Service to request a review/ re-measurement appointment.
How do you contact your Orthotic Service?
North Tees and Hartlepool Foundation Trust
Telephone: 01429 522471
Comments, concerns, compliments or complaints
Patient Experience Team (PET)
We are continually trying to improve the services we provide. We want to know what we’re doing well or if there’s anything which we can improve, that’s why the Patient Experience Team (PET) is here to help. Our Patient Experience Team is here to try to resolve your concerns as quickly as possible. The office is based on the ground floor at the University Hospital of North Tees if you wish to discuss concerns in person. If you would like to contact or request a copy of our PET leaflet, please contact:
Telephone: 01642 624719
Freephone: 0800 092 0084
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 4:00pm
Email: [email protected]
Out of hours
Out of hours if you wish to speak to a senior member of Trust staff, please contact the hospital switchboard who will bleep the appropriate person.
Telephone: 01642 617617
Data protection and use of patient information
The Trust has developed Data Protection policies in accordance with Data Protection Legislation (UK General Data Protection Regulations and Data Protection Act 2018) and the Freedom of Information Act 2000. All of our staff respect these policies and confidentiality is adhered to at all times. If you require further information on how we process your information please see our Privacy Notices.
Telephone: 01642 383551
Email: [email protected]Privacy Notices
This leaflet has been produced in partnership with patients and carers. All patient leaflets are regularly reviewed, and any suggestions you have as to how it may be improved are extremely valuable. Please write to the Clinical Governance team, North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospital of North Tees, TS19 8PE or:
Email: [email protected]
Leaflet Reference: PIL1392
Date for Review: 28/11/2025