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Palm Beach Podiatry

Taking Care of Turf Toe

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Sports season is a time for a higher risk of turf toe.With the start of the 2015-16 school year here, many Palm Beach-area students are putting effort not only into classroom activities but also on the fields, courts, and in pools. High school sports are a great way for young adults to stay in shape and learn the values of hard work and setting goals. Of course, any physical activity comes with the risk of injury, so you may need to know about taking care of turf toe injuries, for example, if your son or daughter is an athlete.

We find that many people, especially sports fanatics, are familiar with the term “turf toe” without actually understanding what it means. There is a general recognition that it is an injury affecting a toe, and that it can keep you out of commission for an extended period of time. What most people do not understand is that this condition is a sprain resulting from hyperextension of the big toe.

As we look at care for a toe sprain, it is important to note it will be placed into one of three grades, with a Grade 1 sprain being mild compared to a Grade 3. This helps in understanding what to expect for treatment.

When a turf toe injury is first sustained, start the RICE protocol. This is a matter of resting, icing, compressing, and elevating the injured toe to reduce the risk of further damage, alleviate pain and swelling, and allow the body to begin natural healing processes. In the case of a Grade 1 sprain, RICE might be a sufficient form of treatment, especially when paired with any prescribed nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications to further decrease swelling and pain.

For athletes, the tolerable level of pain of a low-grade sprain may allow for sports participation with the use of stiff-soled shoes. Orthotic devices, especially sturdy inserts with forefoot components, can further serve to provide stability.

If you have a severely sprained toe, or find that you are having poor results treating turf toe with home care, come to Palm Beach Podiatry. We can get you started on an effective treatment plan that gets you back on your feet in the shortest amount of time. Schedule your appointment with any of our three Palm Beach, FL locations via our online form, or call (561) 734-3100 for our Boynton Beach office, (561) 791-7773 for our Loxahatchee office, or (772) 468-0089 for our Fort Pierce office today.

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