Injury timeout with an Aircast boot! Here’s how to cope.
When you land your foot the wrong way, you tend to get injured
I worked out, landed the wrong way on my left foot, and got fractured as a result. Yikes!
I was doing my normal routine (work, play, pray, workout, repeat) early this month when life threw me yet another curveball. I was doing a quick cardio/strength sesh because I was pressed for time when I accidentally turned my left foot sideways before landing on it hard, small toe first, on the floor. The pain was so acute I had to stop and ice the area immediately. After five days of icing and elevating the area but still getting little relief, I finally decided to go see a doctor.
Symptom relief for those with metatarsal fractures
It took me five days to see a physician because I initially thought what I had was only a sprain, by the way. Sheesh. Should you have the misfortune of suffering a sports- or fitness-related injury, I hope that you get yourself checked sooner. 🙂
If you’re curious about how to care for fractures at home – and while you have yet to consult with your doctor – here are some symptom relief tips from MedlinePlus:
How to decrease swelling
Rest and do not put weight on your foot.
Elevate your foot.
Use an ice compress for 20 minutes every hour while awake for the first 2 days, then 2 to 3 times a day.
How to decrease pain
Use OTC medicines like ibuprofen. Don’t use medicines for the first 24 hours after your injury as it may increase the risk of bleeding. Take note that some medicines are not advisable for people with heart disease, kidney disease, stomach ulcers, etc. Again, it’s best if you do a run-through of your medication regimen with a professional healthcare provider.
How to live with and care for a medical walking boot
Here are my personal tips:
Wear a sock. – The fit is better that way. Also, it’s hygienic.
Be careful when walking. – The boot has a rocker bottom, so walking on it will feel a bit strange and unwieldy. I have to shift my foot sideways when walking up and down the stairs.
Find a shoe that has a 1-2 inch heel – To help with your balance.
Here are some other tips from a few other sources:
Beacon Hospital says to watch out for signs of deep vein thrombosis or DVT. That makes sense ‘coz blood clots can form in the body when movement is limited. DVT forms in the calf of the leg; its symptoms include calf pain and swelling, redness, and heat. Have your leg and fracture checked if you feel any of those.
Beacon Hospital’s guidelines also advises against driving but not traveling. So yes, you can travel. Just don’t get behind the wheel.
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, meanwhile, mentions the need to spend 2-3 hours a day with your ankle elevated above heart level. I comply with this guideline when I sleep by propping pillows on my affected foot.
One of the advantages of using a walking boot instead of the usual cast is that you can actually remove it during shower time. The Outpatient Department of Stepping Hill Hospital says that a boot can be removed to wash, check on the limb for soreness, and pressure relief. It’s only been two weeks since I had my fracture however, so – although I appreciate the fact that I can take off the boot – I feel better with it than without it. With it, it really feels that my foot is getting the support it needs.
Warning signs, a.k.a., time for another clinic visit
All of the aforementioned sources say that the following are signs that something’s not right:
the skin on your injured leg is painful, irritated, or red,
a part of your boot seems to be damaged or broken,
you continue to have significant pain even after regular elevation and ice compression, and/or
your wound is oozing and doesn’t appear to be stopping.
Exercises for those with foot injuries
The following videos feature safe exercises for those with foot injuries. How safe is safe, though? For that, you’ll need to ask your doctor (and I hope you do!). Each medical case is unique.
From Fitness Blender:
This is a good chair workout, though not all of the moves are lower body injury-friendly. For instance, I strongly suggest skipping the calf raises and high knees. My rule of thumb is this: skip exercises that you think might cause you more injury.
From Caroline Jordan:
This is harder than it looks. This will make you sweat.
From Heather Frey:
I have a hard time with the push-ups shown in the vid, but that’s because I’ve always had a hard time with push-ups anyway. 🙂
Where to buy medical walking boots in Manila
I am not affiliated with either company and this is not an endorsement of either one, but I’m sharing their contact details here just in case you need the information:
Address: Sonak Centre, 2nd floor Km. 18 West Service Road, South Luzon Expressway, Marcelo Green, Parañaque, 1700 Metro Manila
Phone: (02) 776-1234
Contact person: Jolly
Address: 1601-1602 Taipan Place F. Ortigas Jr. Road, Pasig City, Metro Manila
Phone: (02) 718 1083
Contact person: Alona
I’ll give an update on how my injury heals later this year. 🙂
Have you ever been sidelined with an injury? How did you deal with it? I’d love to know!
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Everything in this blog are for informational purposes only. This is not a sponsored post. If you have any medical concerns, please consult a trusted healthcare professional.
July 22, 2017 update: Here’s the latest on my fitness injury.
Health information from Medline Plus, Beacon Hospital, Dartmouth-Hitchcock, and Stepping Hill Hospital’s Outpatient Department (Fracture Clinic).
Skeletal photo from Wikimedia Commons.
Read my blog’s full disclosure and disclaimer here.