Whether you’re a youth athlete or a weekend warrior, the love of the game may push your body to the point of injury during play. Accidents, poor training practices, and improper gear are all-too-common factors that can contribute to damage to the feet or ankles.
Athletic injuries can be difficult to manage without proper care and evaluation from a physician. Worse, if injuries don’t heal properly, they may lead to chronic arthritis or instability that affect both the quality of your play and the quality of your life. When the game you love causes foot and ankle pain, you need Dr. Trent Timson and the Community Foot Clinic of McPherson on your side.
Common Injuries of the Feet and Ankles
There are two main types of sports injuries: acute and chronic.
Acute injuries occur suddenly without notice—think an ankle sprain or ruptured tendon. They often cause sudden and severe pain and swelling, and inability to place weight on the affected foot. By contrast, chronic (also known as overuse) injuries develop from wear and tear over time. They continue to cause both swelling and pain during exercise, as well as when you rest.
Some of the most common sports-related foot and ankle injuries include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Achilles tendon rupture
- Ankle fractures
- Ankle sprains
- Black toenails
- Broken toes
- Forefoot pain
- Heel pain
- Lisfranc (midfoot) injuries
- Sesamoid injuries
- Shin splints
- Stress fractures
- Turf toe
Healing at Home
Minor aches and pains from overuse can often be prevented and treated through conservative care at home, using RICE therapy. RICE stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. When we say “rest,” we mean avoid the kinds of physical activities that lead to painful symptoms. Ice, compression wraps and bandages, and elevating feet when you sit or sleep are all remedies that help keep pain and swelling at a minimum.
Effective Sports Injury Care
Any injury that lingers for more than few days or exceeds the “minor ache and pain” stage—including all ankle sprains—should be evaluated by a podiatric physician. At the Community Foot Clinic of McPherson, we offer comprehensive treatment options to help you recover from your sports injury as quickly as possible.
We are thrilled to provide state-of-the-art laser therapy as an effective conservative treatment option for all kinds of sports injuries. This is the latest and greatest way to help athletes return to the game (and workers back to work) in the shortest possible timeframe. The laser produces light (photon) energy at a power and wavelength that your body’s injured cells can respond to. This triggers them to increase circulation and metabolism and accelerate the healing process. Laser therapy can dramatically reduce recovery time versus traditional conservative remedies alone, and can even successfully treat very stubborn injuries that previously would have required surgery
Additional treatment options may include some or all of the following:
- Physical therapy—stretches and exercises designed to help you recover and rehabilitate
- Custom orthotics—shoe inserts that cushion the feet from impacts and correct the biomechanical alignments that often cause injury in the first place
- Injection therapy—targeted cortisone injections into a small area of injured tissue is an effective temporary remedy for painful symptoms that aren’t responding to other treatments
- Proper footwear—too often, shoes that are too tight, don’t fit your feet, or aren’t right for the sport you play contribute to injuries and pain
- Immobilization—sometimes broken bones will need to be immobilized and protected by a short cast, brace, walking boot, or other device
- Surgery—this is rarely required for soft tissue injuries, but more severe or unstable bone fractures may require it to realign and protect bones while they heal
Whatever your injury, we can help you get better. To schedule an appointment in McPherson—or one of our satellite offices in Lindsborg or Hillsboro—give us a call today at (620) 241-3313.