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Richardson Podiatry Center

First Aid for Athletes: Taping up Broken Toes

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Bruised broken toeYour feet are usually stuck in shoes, taking you everywhere from the bleachers at a Texas Rangers game to shopping at the mall. You may not put taking care of them at the top of your priority list—until there is a problem and you notice the important role they play. You have 19 toe bones in your foot, and even though they are tiny, a broken toe can be very painful! Whether it happens from stubbing your toe in the middle of the night or jamming it during a sports game, treat broken toes right to ensure they heal properly.

After breaking a toe, home care includes applying ice, elevating the foot, and rest. These efforts help reduce swelling and lessen the pain. If you are in severe pain and/or the toe is noticeably displaced we encourage you to seek immediate medical attention. For minor breaks, a common treatment method is one called “buddy taping.” This involves taping the injured toe to its neighboring toe, which acts as a splint for the broken toe. Use gauze or cotton as a padding between the two toes—it should feel comfortable and should not spread the two toes apart. This helps absorb moisture between the two toes and prevents them from rubbing together. Wrap the tape around both toes, making sure to not wrap too tightly, making two to three rounds depending on the size of your toes. If your skin changes color, it is too tight and needs to be loosened. Change the padding and tape every day, as your daily activities and showering can cause it to become loose or dirty. Complete healing can take up to four weeks. If you have continued pain while trying this method, have our office evaluate your toe to make sure nothing more serious is going on.

If you have sustained any kind of foot injury and have concerns or require treatment, Richardson Podiatry Associates has the expertise to help. Contact us anytime at (972) 690-5374 to make an appointment with Dr. Gene Reister at our office in Richardson, TX.

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