The foot and ankle may sustain a variety of injuries. It is essential to diagnose these injuries, provide immediate treatment, and determine the best way to manage them until they can be evaluated by a Scottsdale foot and ankle trauma specialist. Types of injuries include fractures, lacerations, severe bruises, and strains.

 

The following are some tips to manage foot and ankle trauma.

 

Check the ABCs (Airway, Breathing, and Circulation)

When dealing with any injury, it is vital to check the ABCs. For foot and ankle trauma, circulation is most important. Check the capillary refill by pressing on the nail bed. If the nail stays white longer than 2 seconds, circulation is absent and requires immediate medical care.

 

Apply Ice or a Cold Pack

Ice the area for 20 minutes every hour on the initial day after an injury. After that, ice 10 minutes every two hours to reduce swelling and pain. See a doctor right away if the area is red, hot, numb, tingly, or weak. Also, seek immediate medical attention if you have any abnormal sensation in the foot or ankle.

 

Elevate Swollen Areas

Ankle sprains typically result in edema, which means swelling accompanied by fluid. To help reduce pain and swelling after an injury, try to elevate your leg while sitting with pillows under it for equal support on both sides of the injury.

 

Uncover the Wound

If there is any debris in the area, uncover it before cleaning or rinsing the injured area. If there is swelling, do not try to reduce it with ice or cold compresses. Elevate the injured area and apply a cold pack. If you do not have access to ice, elevate the leg and soak it in cool water for 15-20 minutes at a time.

 

Immobilize the Injured Area with a Splint or Brace

When the area is swollen, splint or brace the leg to prevent further injury. However, do not apply a tourniquet because it may cause tissue damage. If there is extensive bleeding, place sterile gauze over the wound and press firmly for 15 minutes without stopping to look at it before bandaging the area with gauze pads and an elastic bandage. Do not try to clean the wound before wrapping it.

 

Wash the Wound with Soap and Water

Use a mild or antibacterial soap to clean the wound. Be sure to remove any debris, such as dirt, leaves, sticks, etc. If there is still swelling, do not press on the wound. Instead, elevate it and apply ice or cold packs. Cover the area with sterile pads and then a bandage with an elastic band. See a doctor if it doesn't get better.

 

Foot and ankle trauma are common injuries that you can manage at home. It is important to remember to check circulation, elevate the area if it's swollen, and use ice or cold packs. Immobilize the injured area with a bandage or splint and clean the wound with soap and water. Then, seek medical care right away if there is still pain or swelling or if the injury does not get better.

 

Author's Bio: 

Parker shown is a full time blogger and can be contacted at parkershown99@gmail.com