A broken ankle indicates a bone fracture in the ankle. It’s often painful and can limit your mobility. But it can’t hold you back if you’ve got the courage and know-how to get around in such a situation. By following some simple tricks and taking the help of a few mobility aids, you can comfortably survive a broken ankle.
You may need to invest in a few comfort items. But all these have to be according to expert guidelines. After hearing from many orthopedics and PTs, we’ve found the best ways to get around with an injured ankle. Let’s find out more about these ways.
Living With a Broken Ankle
Living with a broken ankle isn’t easy. If you’ve injured your ankle somehow (there could be many reasons like twisting, tripping, or rolling the ankle), your next eight to twelve weeks could be quite intimidating.
But don’t worry; things could be under control if you know what to expect and what to do during recovery. Let’s first check out what a broken ankle feels like and what treatment options could come your way.
How It Feels
The injured area gets bruised or swollen and can be quite painful. Putting weight on the injured ankle can hurt badly. It can even feel stiff, making it harder for you to move. Severe symptoms of a broken ankle could include severe pain, toe turning white or blue, numbness, and even bone sticking out of the ankle.
You’re supposed to be under the supervision of a fracture clinic and probably an orthopedic surgeon for the recovery. According to AAOS, broken ankle bones take around 6 to 12 weeks to heal. You’ll go through different diagnoses and evaluations. It’ll help the doctor choose your treatment options, which could be surgical or non-surgical (using different pain meds).
In the treatment process, your doctor will most likely mold a plaster cast to your ankle to provide maximum support and protection to the injured joints and bones in the ankle. Some also consider removable ankle brace to keep the ankle bones steady. But you can still get around with it with the help of different comfort and mobility aids.
Choosing the Right Mobility Aids
To survive a broken ankle, you first have to choose the right mobility device. Crutches, knee scooters, and wheelchairs are the most effective walking assisting devices. Let’s help you find out which suits your needs best.
Crutches are the most popular yet least expensive aid to opt for broken ankle sufferers. They make the best choice for short-term orthopedic rehabilitation. You can get height-adjustable crutches and move comfortably with even strides for your daily chores.
A pair of crutches can also be a great exercise for your injured leg, which could help the recovery process. Although using crutches requires strength and can cause fatigue, you should still be alright to handle it for the short-time usage.
Walker or Scooter
If you’re looking for more stability and comfortability, you could opt for a walker or knee scooter throughout the healing process. It provides great balance while you’re standing. So you can finish your routine chores even with a broken ankle.
It supports your non-weight-bearing ankle greatly, so you can take regular walks outside to keep your body active. It’s expensive and has limited gait options, so some may not prefer it for the short-time recovery.
If you want to move around with your essentials, a wheelchair is probably the best mobility aid. It’s the most stable device and doesn’t require any physical effort to balance. You can roam on the lawn or inside the house and do regular activities to keep yourself busy.
A wheelchair is expensive. Also, its major drawback is that it doesn’t allow your injured leg to do any work. It isn’t good since you need your legs to exercise for a quick recovery. They’re also big, and you can’t transport in anywhere you want.
Some More Aids to Get Around with a Broken Ankle
Besides the mobility aids, you can get a few more comfort items for an easy get-around with the injured ankle. These items are also prescribed by therapists and include:
Physical therapists prescribe wedge pillows to patients with broken ankles. It can help you keep the leg, and the cast elevated to reduce swelling. You can also use it to position your leg while lying down or sleeping. Once you’re healed, you can also use it as back support.
Crutch Pads or Wheel Chair Cushion
If you’re using a mobility aid like crutches or a wheelchair, you can make them more comfortable by getting little addons. For crutches, try using gel-based crutch covers or pads that’ll reduce friction to relieve the pain. And if you’re using a wheelchair, you can gel-based foam cushion to add comfortable padding.
The ice pack is a common suggestion for people with broken ankles. Applying it to the cast can reduce inflammation and speeds up healing. Some packs are designed to fit around the ankle perfectly for soothing pressure relief.
Many doctors recommend a walking boot after removing the cast. It helps one while making the transition to normal walking. It helps one practice a normal gait, and its air system absorbs shock to relieve pain.
To get around with the broken ankle and heal faster, you can also consider the following tips:
- NHS in the UK suggests raising the ankle as much as possible
- Be careful with your ankle brace or cast
- Always follow the doctor’s recommendations
- Avoid putting pressure on your injured foot and walk using a mobility aid
- Eat healthily and take enough rest
- Wait for your doctor’s advice on using the ankle again
- Visit a physical therapist who can help you with physical therapy and exercising the ankle
Most people with broken ankles start doing normal activities within four months, except for sports. But you can do a few daily activities as soon as the pain fades, which should be within a week. But you must ensure that you keep the weight off the injured ankle and walk with the right support aid and also use the comfort items in your daily lives.
Drapovian.com is a website that provides accurate and authentic information about health products. Our goal is to carefully craft user-friendly contents.