Not sure about something? You’re not alone.
Below are some common questions asked by our patients. Select the section you’d like to learn more about below.
If you have a question we haven’t covered click on ask your question bellow and we will try to answer it for you.
Why should I get a Boundless brace when I get one that costs far less at the drugstore?
Ready-to-wear devices such as foot insoles and knee braces are mass-produced and made to fit everyone. In many of these cases, you don’t know where it was manufactured, so the quality may be compromised. While you may get short-term relief, it may not address your underlying biomechanical problem—it may even make it worse
At Boundless, you know exactly where your brace or splint is coming from. It’s either custom-made at our clinic, or supplied from one of the top manufacturers of ready-to-wear orthotics. And that quality extends to everything we do—from the initial evaluation to the continuing follow-up and care. So while you may pay more, in the long run you’ll get a better return on your investment.
What is biomechanics?
Basically it’s the science of studying how your body moves. Just as mechanics deal with the working parts that produce motion in vehicles such as cars and airplanes, the biomechanical experts at Boundless analyze how the parts of your body work together so we can improve its overall mobility and function. Although we specialize in lower limb biomechanics, we can offer individualized solutions from head to toe.
Orthosis, orthoses, orthotics…. what’s the difference?
It’s pretty much a grammar thing. Orthosis is the singular noun, while orthoses is the plural form, as in “a pair of orthoses.” Orthotic on the other hand is a little trickier. Originally it was used an adjective, as in “orthotic device”, but now it is being used as a noun. So if you ask for an orthotic, we’ll probably know what you’re talking about!
What is a Registered Orthotic Technician?
A Registered Orthotic Technician RTO(c) provides technical expertise in the design and fabrication of orthotic devices and their components such as straps and buckles to ensure maximum fit, function, and aesthetic appeal. To become a Registered Technician, you must have either completed a two-year program in the Prosthetics & Orthotics Technician Program at George Brown College in Toronto with a two-year internship or a four-year equivalent. Following that, you must successfully complete a series of written and practical exams.
Do you provide medical prescriptions?
No. We are unable to write a medical prescription for any reason. Your referring physician will provide you with a prescription before you come to your first appointment. We are, however, able to use the information gathered during your assessment to determine which orthotic design will be best for you.
How do I know whether I’m dealing with a qualified orthotic professional?
Certified Orthotists CO(c) require years of post-secondary education and training to practice their profession and are bound by a strict code of conduct. They should have a certificate and certification number from the national accrediting body Orthotics Prosthetics Canada (OPC). In some cases, the “expert” may claim to have taken a weekend course in orthotics, which barely brushes the surface of biomechanical issues. Also be sure to ask what kind of follow-up services they provide. If they can’t give you a sound and honest answer, move on to a more reputable source. It’s your body after all.
Will a brace cure my condition?
This is a question we get asked often and there are no easy answers. One way to think of an orthosis is as a biomechanical device that helps replace lost function and mobility by positioning a body part in an optimum way, allowing it to move in a specific way. This often prevents the affected limb or joint from moving into a bad position, throwing off the alignment of the rest of the body alignment of the rest of the body. By treating the symptoms of a condition we can often decrease fatigue, pain and skin breakdown or increase balance, joint motion and confidence..
An analogy we often use at Boundless is that getting an orthotic device is like getting a pair of eyeglasses for near sightedness. While the eyeglasses won’t cure the underlying problem, they will improve your eyesight while you wear them.
Questions about children
What happens if my child’s brace gets too small?
Naturally children will grow, and their orthotic needs will change. Call the office to book an appointment to have their brace adjusted for growth. This can involve any number of measures, from extending its height and toe length to heating it and easing it open for more volume. Usually we do this before casting for a new device. Please bring your most recent device(s) to any new casting appointment even if they become much too small to wear.
What should I do if my child’s brace is causing red marks or discomfort?
Book an appointment to have it adjusted. While red marks may appear on skin after an orthotic device has been fitted, they should disappear after 30 minutes of wearing the device. If they linger longer than 30 minutes, the device should be adjusted by your orthotist.
Can my child get his or her brace wet or go swimming while wearing it?
It’s not a good idea. An orthotic device is designed primarily for walking and would not likely provide a benefit while swimming. Moreover, a wet environment can rust or corrode certain components such as the rivets or wear out the velcro. If you’re looking for a device that can be worn in the water, please discuss this with your orthotist as they will need to plan for certain designs and materials.
Do you provide medical prescriptions?
No. We cannot provide medical prescriptions. Your referring physician will provide you with a prescription before you come to your first appointment. We are, however, able to use the information gathered during your assessment to determine which orthotic design will be best for you.
Can I start wearing my orthotic device continuously right away?
Even if this is not your first device, we recommend a gradual wearing schedule for the first 2 weeks. This is to ensure your skin develops a tolerance to the shape of the orthosis and your body becomes adjusted to any new alignment change. Please refer to the wearing schedule provided for further instructions or ask your orthotist.
When do I need to replace my brace?
That depends on a lot of things from your age, condition, weight and how hard you are on your brace. Most are made to last many years. At Boundless, we’ve seen braces that last up to 10 years. In some cases, they may need to be replaced earlier.
Something broke on my brace. Can I fix it myself?
Generally we discourage home repairs as they will void the warranty of your orthosis. So it’s best to call our office and have it repaired. Speak to our orthotists about which devices are covered under our warranty policy and which are not.
The velcro isn’t sticking on my straps anymore. Can this be fixed?
Yes, we are able to replace the velcro straps. For most straps, there is a replacement cost.
What happens if my brace needs a few repairs—pads come unglued, straps need replacing, etc. Is there a cost for this?
It depends. During the fitting of your new orthosis, any repairs or adjustments are covered by the initial cost of the device. However, there are exceptions to this which you can discuss with your orthotist. After you have owned your brace for 6 months, there may be a charge for repairs. The cost of repairs will vary based on the complexity and time required to carry it out.
What funding is available?
There are a number of government, private and charitable organizations that will provide partial or complete funding for your device. Please refer to our FUNDING page for more information.
Can you bill my insurance company directly?
Unfortunately we do not provide this service. Insurance companies will provide you with the necessary forms to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. Additional documentation may be required by insurance companies before patients can receive funding. We can usually help you with this by providing a letter of evaluation.