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Posts for tag: Sports Injuries

By Dr. Paul C. LaFata
September 25, 2014
Category: Sports Injuries
Tags: Sports Injuries   Turf Toe  

Turf toe is a common football injuryStaying active and having fun in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, is easier than you might think. Centers like the Body Zone Sports and Wellness Complex provide fun, healthy activity for all ages—particularly through their sports leagues, like their adult flag football or youth basketball teams. If you’re playing a sport on an artificial surface, though, you have to pay extra attention to your feet. Injuries like turf toe are painful and need the right treatment to recover.

Turf toe is more serious than many people realize. It’s a sprain in the supporting ligaments of the big toe. This occurs when the toe is suddenly bent back farther than its normal range of motion. Since your big toe is crucial for pushing off the ground to walk, run, or jump, a sprained big toe sharply limits your mobility. Failing to treat a sprain can lead to long-term weakness in the foot.

To prevent that, you need to recognize the injury and care for your turf toe right away. Generally the pain develops immediately when the problem occurs. You may or may not feel a “pop” when the toe bends back. The joint at the base of your big toe will swell and become difficult to move. You may or may not have bruising, too, depending on the seriousness of the damage. Most likely you’ll experience pain when you put weight on the ball of the foot that will worsen if you try to push off the ground.

The RICE technique—rest, ice, compress, elevate—can help with first aid so you can start recovering right away.  Avoid putting weight on the affected foot for the first few hours after the injury if you can. Wear a stiff-soled shoe or splint to avoid bending the big toe, too. Ice the toe and keep your feet up during the day. You might need anti-inflammatory medications as well.

Once the pain has disappeared, you’ll need to rehabilitate your toe. Stretching will help regain an appropriate range of motion. Exercises to strengthen your toe will help condition your foot to handle the strain of your activities. Even then, you’ll need to ease into sports slowly.

Turf toe is serious, since it limits your mobility. You don’t have to let it sideline you forever, though. Some prompt care will get you back into your busy life without pain. If you’ve sprained your foot, let our team at West Lawn Podiatry help. Call (610) 678-4581 or use the online form to request an appointment.

By Dr. Paul C. LaFata
September 18, 2014
Category: Ankle Sprain

Ice your ankle to help with recoveryRegular season football has only been underway for a few weeks, and already the injury list is littered with players suffering from ankle issues. Some, like Tandon Doss for the Jacksonville Jaguars and Sanders Commings for the Kansas City Chiefs, are already out for the season. Most of the others, however, are working hard to rehabilitate their joints and make a comeback later in the year. Recovering from a sprained ankle, or any other joint injury, takes time and effort. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a pro football player to get good care for ankle sprains.

Ankle sprains are an overstretching or tearing of the ligaments that stabilize your ankle joint. This happens when your ankle twists or rolls suddenly. This painfully destabilizes the joint—and depending on how serious the injury, may take a while to recover. It’s a very common problem, particularly for athletes. Whether you run for fun or play football for school, if you’re active, you’re at risk. The key to recovering well and getting back to your activities without pain is simple: don’t rush it.

Give your joint the break it needs to heal. Avoid all hard-impact activities for a while. You may even benefit from wearing a brace or compression bandage to immobilize the foot. Ice the tender area and keep your foot elevated when you can to minimize any swelling. Our staff at West Lawn Podiatry Associates may recommend anti-inflammatory pain medications as well.

Once the swelling and pain have gone down, you’ll need some physical therapy to help stabilize and restore your joint to full health. This will mean carefully stretching and working on range-of-motion exercises. Resistance and weight-bearing activities will help build strength and power in the tissues that are still repairing. Balance exercises will help improve your overall stability.

Recovering from a sprained ankle can take anywhere from a couple weeks to a couple months depending on how severe the original injury was—as well as the initial care. Investing in your joint health can mean the difference between getting back into your activities pain-free and spending months struggling with discomfort and possibly re-spraining your limb. Don’t cheat yourself out of a full recovery. If you’ve hurt an ankle, let our team at West Lawn Podiatry Associates in the Wyomissing and Sinking Springs area help you heal properly. Just call (610) 678-4581 or use our website to make an appointment.

Photo Credit: artur84 via FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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