How to Adjust to Your Walking Boot After an Ankle Injury

How to Adjust to Your Walking Boot After an Ankle Injury

An ankle injury really puts a damper on your normal activities. Whether you have a fracture or a tendon injury, it’s likely you’ll need a walking boot while you recover. These boots are vital to keepmstress off of your injury, but they can be hard to get used to.

At the Phoenix Foot and Ankle Institute, Dr. Jeffrey E. McAlister and his team offer specialized care when your foot or ankle is in pain. Dr. McAlister offers a number of modern and state-of-the-art treatments for ankle injuries, including a number of different walking boots.

When do you need a walking boot?

After an ankle injury, there are several steps you need to take in order to relieve your pain and allow your tissues to heal. Home care such as ice and anti-inflammatories are okay for mild injuries, but a walking boot may be necessary for the following conditions:

If you’ve hurt your ankle, Dr. McAlister assesses your symptoms to determine the perfect treatment plan for your injury. This may require a number of different therapies, including a walking boot. This device takes pressure off your ankle to allow it to heal.

Tips to adjust to your walking boot

When Dr. McAlister prescribes a walking boot after your injury, it may seem like an easy fix to the problem. However, getting used to a walking boot is a little trickier than it sounds. It may take a little time to adjust, so here are some tips that can help:

Make sure to rest

Although the walking boot is made for just that — walking — you shouldn’t take it too far. You still have an injury that needs rest. Be sure to sit down and take the weight off of your feet to keep pain and swelling to a minimum. For most injuries, physical activity is not recommended in the boot.

Take shorter steps

The bottom of a walking boot is curved, like a rocker. This means you can’t take normal-length strides. Shorter steps help take the stress off your injured ankle.

Keep your other foot level

Walking boots are much higher than typical shoes, meaning your other foot won’t be level. To prevent limping and other issues, your non-injured foot needs a taller shoe to be level with the walking boot. Dr. McAlister gives you options when it comes to keeping your feet level including an Even-Up device to assist.

Follow doctor’s orders

Dr. McAlister gives you specific instructions when you’re fitted with your boot. It’s very important to always follow these instructions, as he’s an expert in using these types of devices for many different injuries.

Use assistive devices

Even with a taller shoe on the unaffected leg, you may still feel as though you’re limping. In this case, you might want to use a knee scooter, cane, or crutch to help take the pressure off your leg.

Once you get the hang of the walking boot, you’re on your way to a full recovery. It may take a few days or weeks to get the hang of the boot, so don’t get stressed if it’s awkward at first.

When to contact the team about your walking boot

While walking boots are made to help you, improper use or other issues can lead to serious problems. It’s important to reach out to the team if you suffer from any of the following complications:

Pain, swelling, or redness in one of your calves can indicate a blood clot, which is serious. These can form after an injury without sufficient movement in the affected leg. It’s important to let Dr. McAlister and his team know if you have any of the above symptoms.

Sometimes, all you need is a small adjustment to your boot in order to relieve your symptoms. It’s common for ankle injuries to swell and lead to other symptoms in the first few days following the event. However, if your symptoms continue with the walking boot, it’s important to let Dr. McAlister know, in case there are any other issues going on.

If you’ve suffered an ankle injury and need expert care, call us at 602-761-7819 to schedule a consultation with Dr. McAlister, or book an appointment online with us today.

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