Injuries often happen when you least expect them, which probably means you won’t know how to handle that situation in the moment. Broken bones are one of the most common injuries likely caused by a fall, car accident, playing sports, etc. A break happens whenever there is trauma or pressure on the bone that exceeds the bone’s ability to bend.
In this blog, we’ll share some tips on the do’s and don’ts of how to care for a broken bone. Follow these tips to begin your healing process and to regain your strength back!
Dos and Don’ts of Caring for a Broken Bone
Do: seek medical care
It’s important to get good first-aid because a broken bone can cause serious pain, increased bleeding, and damage to the tissues around the break. If you don’t get the proper treatment, it can lead to complications in the repair and healing of the injury.
Don’t: diagnose yourself
Going hand-in-hand with the previous tip, don’t try to diagnose your injury. Self-diagnosis can lead to negative consequences like improper healing. It’s always best to discuss your injuries with a doctor as soon as possible. This way you can discuss the proper treatment options and decide on the best choice for you.
Do: take the medicine prescribed to you
Breaking a bone can be excruciating, so taking the medication prescribed to you can help manage the pain. You can expect swelling, bruising, and tenderness within the first few days.
Don’t: ignore pain or discomfort
If the pain or discomfort is too much to handle, call your doctor immediately. Symptoms like numbness, stinging, or burning are not “normal” signs of a broken bone and should be examined by a medical professional.
Do: get your rest
After breaking a bone, you’ll want to rest and elevate your injury. It’s best to limit activity so that you can avoid bumping it or putting pressure on the broken bone.
Don’t: sit out your rehab
Rehab is an important part of your healing process. With time and the doctor’s permission, you’ll be able to start exercising again with physical therapy. Physical therapy will help you regain your normal range of motion, strength, and mobility.
Do: keep your cast clean and dry
Wearing a cast can help stabilize the bone and limit movement. You’ll want to do your best to keep it clean and dry. During showers or baths, you’ll want to cover your cast with plastic and secure it with duct tape or a rubber band. Avoid swimming and activities that involve dirt or sand. A wet and dirty cast can cause infection and promote mold growth.
Don’t: take off your cast
It’s typical for your cast to feel slightly uncomfortable especially when it’s new, but you should never try to take your cast off. Taking off your cast can lead to further injuring yourself. If you have an itch, don’t stick objects inside your cast. Instead, blow cool air through the opening with a fan or blow dryer to relieve the itch.
Do: be patient
Broken bones take weeks if not months to heal, so be patient. Your doctor and physical therapist will be there for you to help guide you through the process and get you back to your normal self.
Visit Prairie Orthopaedic & Plastic Surgery in Lincoln, NE for orthopaedic care for broken bones and other injuries. You’ll receive advanced treatment options from Dr. Hurlbut or one of our excellent providers. We make sure that all patients get quality care and are educated about all of their treatment options. Please call 402-489-4700 to schedule an appointment.