March is around the corner, and with it comes the much-anticipated NCAA basketball tournament and March Madness! The best teams from around the country will compete for a spot in the championship game. Right now, of course, teams are still just hoping for a spot in the tournament and trying to avoid injuries before it takes place. A simple wrong step, twist, or collision with another player could lead to a season-ending injury like a broken foot. Foot fractures are serious for the rest of us who don’t play college ball, too. They sharply limit your mobility and put you at risk for long-term complications. When fractures happen, they need first aid and prompt medical care.
Sports like basketball put a lot of stress on the feet. All the jumping, twisting, and changing directions can overload the bones. All it takes is one accident for something to break, from your metatarsals to your heel bone. Once that happens, you need prompt medical care—but while you’re waiting, first aid can help control the damage and alleviate some of the pain. Here are a few things to do when you end up with a broken foot:
- Immobilize it – Take all weight off the foot and avoid moving it. Don’t apply a full splint unless you know how, but do what you can to avoid moving and damaging the bones.
- Elevate it – Prop your foot up on pillows. If you can, lay down so the foot is above the level of your heart. This will help discourage fluid pooling in your tissues, which causes swelling.
- Ice it – Apply ice packs to the painful area. The cold helps numb the pain, decrease inflammation, and discourage swelling.
Don’t try to realign any bones yourself. Do what you can to reduce swelling and inflammation, and stop any bleeding. You’re going to need professional foot care. Contact Carolina Podiatry Group right away for X-rays and further treatment after first aid. You can reach our Indian Land and Lancaster, South Carolina, offices by calling: (803) 548-FEET for Indian Land, or (803) 285-1411 for Lancaster.