Spring Brings Increase in Foot and Ankle Injuries
The warmer weather that we are finally beginning to experience in New York is bringing people out of their apartments and offices and inspiring a desire to get active again. While this is great for increasing fitness and overall health and wellbeing, we at New York Foot Health find that it can also lead to more foot and ankle injuries if patients are not properly prepared. Among the more common injuries are sprains, strains and fractures.
Recognize the Symptoms
Although sprains and strains are injuries to soft tissue and fractures are breaks in bone, they can present with similar symptoms. If you have injured your foot look for the following signs that there may be a problem that requires medical attention:
- Difficulty walking on the injured foot—don’t be tricked, however, into thinking that if you can walk on it there is not sprain or fracture
- What to Do
Employ the RICE method as soon as possible after the injury:
R-rest the foot and stay off it until it can be evaluated. Continuing to bear weight on a foot that is sprained or has a fracture will definitely make the injury worse.
I-ice the affected area for 15-20 minutes every three to four hours to reduce swelling and inflammation.
C-compress the injured part of the foot or ankle using an elastic bandage to help reduce swelling and provide stability. Don’t wrap so tightly that it increases the pain or you may impede circulation.
E-elevate your foot higher than the level of your heart if possible. This will increase comfort and help decrease swelling.
Schedule a visit with your podiatrist as soon as possible. If you don’t currently have one, you can find a podiatrist in our online directory.
It is always better to err on the side of caution when dealing with foot and ankle injuries. Many times patients who don’t seek treatment end up re-injuring the foot or ankle or developing chronic problems that are way more disabling than the original injury.