Podiatrist in San Leandro, CA
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San Leandro, CA 94577
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By Dr. Michael Stein
October 22, 2014
Category: Fractures
Tags: Broken Toe   recovering  

Running with a Broken ToeHere in the Bay Area, where the weather is pleasant year round and the urban architecture and vast natural beauty offers plenty to do and see, we don’t want anything to slow us down. Unfortunately, broken toes can sometimes get in the way. Recovering from a broken toe isn’t much fun—it mainly requires a lot of rest and 4-6 weeks of time—but there are things you can do to help the recovery process move more smoothly and defend against re-injury.

Immediately after an injury, employ the R.I.C.E. system for acute injury care. First, rest: get off your feet as quickly as you can to avoid doing more damage. Next, apply ice to the area to reduce pain and swelling. Third, use compression techniques—generally, wrapping a bandage around the injury. Finally, try to keep the injury elevated above heart level as often as possible, as this reduces swelling and accelerates healing.

“Buddy taping” is a common method used on less severe fractures for keeping your bones aligned properly while they heal—we will show you how to do this when you come in for a visit. By connecting the broken toe to one of its neighbors using a piece of tape, the strength and stability of your healthy toe keep the broken one in line. Place a piece of cotton between the toes in order to keep them as dry as possible.

Keep an eye on the area, especially if the break was traumatic or there was nail damage. Re-growing toenails are at heightened risk of becoming ingrown. You could also pick up an infection more easily due to the exposed skin.

Once the toe improves, you can slowly increase the amount of walking you do per day. Wear a shoe with a stiff, protective sole; this defends against re-injury and helps keep toes more stable while walking.

As recovery comes to a close, your toe will still be relatively stiff and weakened due to lack of use. Once you’re back to walking normally, start stretching and exercising it. Your goal is to return full strength and range of motion to the affected joints, which will help prevent re-injury.

If you’re dealing with a fracture or need help recovering from a broken toe, give Foot Doctor of the East Bay a call at (510) 483-3390. Our three convenient locations serve patients throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Photo Credit: Hisks via RGBStock.com

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