Even a minor foot injury can mean major problems, robbing you of your mobility. While there are times you will need to see a doctor to get the treatment you need, there are other times you will very likely be able to treat the problem on your own.
Common Causes of a Foot Injury
There are many, many ways that a foot injury can occur. You could hurt it playing basketball or some other sport, or you may simply step off of a curb the wrong way. Underlying conditions can also contribute to an injury, such as Achilles tendinitis, gout, an ingrown toenail or just wearing shoes that are the wrong size.
Since the average person takes anywhere between 8,000 and 10,000 steps a day, there are literally thousands of opportunities for you to suffer a foot injury. No matter what level of pain you are experiencing, even if it is relatively minor, you need to treat the problem before it turns into something that can cause long-term damage.
Treating Yourself After a Foot Injury
Unless you suffer an injury so severe that you require immediate medical attention, your first course of action will likely be to try and treat the problem on your own. One of the best ways is to implement the RICE — rest, ice, compression and elevation — method along with over-the-counter medication to reduce pain and inflammation.
First, of course, stay off the injured foot as much as you can. Then apply ice to the area anywhere from 10-20 minutes several times a day. You may need to do this for a few days before the pain subsides. When you’re not using ice, wrap the area in a bandage to reduce the chances of swelling. Finally, elevate the foot above your heart when lying down, which will also reduce swelling.
When Home Remedies Don’t Work
Unfortunately, there are times where people can’t find the relief they seek and need to see a doctor for a foot injury. But it can be tough to determine exactly when you’ll need to get help from a medical professional. Schedule an appointment as soon as you can if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- The pain is so great you can’t perform everyday tasks.
- The pain gets worse when you try to stand or walk.
- The injured foot either looks misshapen or deformed.
- You notice severe swelling.
- You see changes to either the color of the skin or your toenails.
- The area is tender to the touch or feels hot.
- You have to walk a different way than normal in order for it not to hurt.
A foot injury is nothing to ignore, because it could potentially lead to a long-term disability. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with Regional Orthopedics so you can get the treatment that you need to get back to normal as quickly as possible. Call 718.477.5479 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.