Moving one step at a time and here is part two. I spoke about my orthotics just the other day and now I want to share with you a little about my AFOs. Well, here is another picture of my foot to start off with. I showed you the side view and how much of an arch I have on my feet. With CMT it is common to have really high arches or completely flat. My toes are the other issue with my feet. I have the start of hammer toes. My little toes have almost no toe nail and it’s really hard to cut because my toe wrap up around it. My middle toes have been curling a lot more. My feet are about a size 9 US woman’s shoe and I suspect if I were to have surgery They would be a 10 at least just from lowering my arch. If you can’t tell I really need to cut my toenails. Lol. I always wait until they are pretty long because I find it easier to cut them. My boyfriend is amazing though and cuts them for me because he is such a sweety!
Now on to my AFOs. I have had a variety of AFOs (ankle foot orthoses) over the years. My first pair were in high school and there the hard white plastic that covered the whole back of my leg, ankle, and bottom of my foot. These did not work for me. They made my achilles tendons hurt really bad because my foot was fighting the AFO since I am still pretty strong. The second set of AFOs that I had lasted me two years and were Carbonfiber Blue Rockers which are prefabricated and given to me off the shelf and had orhotics that sat on top of them. My current AFOs pictured here are called Noodle AFOs and these ones are fit specifically to me. I love these new ones. The cuffs at the top have foam padding on them against my leg and the rest is just made of carbonfiber. My second favorite feature is the straps. These straps have foam padding on them to go against the back of my leg instead of just velcro like I had before.
Overall I really love these AFOs because they help me to be more stable when I walk and they help to prevent me from dragging my toes while I walk. They also help to prevent me from slapping my feet down hard when I walk. The only downfall to wearing them is that I always have to readjust when it comes to driving because pushing the pedal feels completely different without them than with them.
I am curious what do you all think? Would you like to see videos of me walking with and without the braces as well as see what sort of movement I have left in my feet?