Home Remedies for Turf Toe: Turf toes sound pretty intense, don’t they? They are essentially big toe joint injuries and can be fairly painful. This term is used to describe the sprain of ligaments present in the big toe joint. While this condition is mostly applicable to football players and ballerinas, who play on artificial turf, it is applicable to other athletes as well. In fact, if you are into any sport whatsoever, this condition could occur to you- whether you play basketball, whether you are a dancer or are into wrestling.
This condition is usually pushed by the congestion found in the big toe. Sometimes, it may arise due to the pushing off of the big toe on a loop: shouting out to all the runners and long-jumpers in the house. So what happens when you pull this ligament? Do you rush to the hospital? To be frank, this condition is not as severe (in most cases) and there is rarely a need to be rushed to the hospital with utmost haste, as there are a number of tricks and home remedies for turf toe that you could give a try first:
9 Tricks & Home Remedies for Turf Toe That Make Home Treatment Easy
1. Cold compresses
Ice is your best friend in this case. Note that turf toes are caused by chronic hyperextension of the big toe. Now, we all know that ice is great for not only alleviating the pain, but also decreasing inflammation, whilst promoting the healing process. Cold compresses are thereby very effective and dab this (or a few cubes of ice wrapped in a cloth) against your big toe for about 10 minutes a day.
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2. Walking boot
These are great in alleviating the pain and pressure off of your foot. Use this for the first two weeks, post-injury. It not only helps in guarding the joint, but promotes healing too.
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3. Arch support
An arch support helps in pressure shifts: since your big toe cannot handle too much pressure, this will make for one of the most effective home remedies for turf toe. Ensure that you invest in a good quality arch support that does not collapse easily. To kick this up a notch, ensure to get an arch support that has a higher arch and excess rigidity: this brings out the best results.
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4. Plenty of rest
There is no doubt that an ample amount of rest is required in order for a speedy recovery to occur. Although it is not easy to rest the foot when you’re walking on it, ensure that you are getting enough time off your feet. The longer you are on your feet, the longer the healing process will be. You might want to make use of a brace in order to protect the toe completely. A taping procedure can render effective in supporting the toe, and further prevent it from bending angles too much, which will only further lead to toe ligament strain and result in more pain.
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5. Compression bandage
It is vital to invest in one of these, shortly post-injury. Compression bandages are effective in not only supporting and guarding the injured toe, but also bringing down the swelling with time. The sooner it is put on, the more the chances of the swelling to reduce faster. Ensure that the bandage is applied for about 10 minutes each time; this is so that the blood flow is not constrained, which would lead to additional damage due to lack of blood flow to tissues.
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6. Get shoes that fit properly
Have them fitted well, but have rigid soles in order to protect the base of the big toe joint. Ensure that the shoe is not too tight, as you do not want to jam the injured toe into a closed, hard surface.
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7. Medical grade Orthotic
You may not have this lying around at home, but those who are used to dealing with these injuries just might. Foot chair orthotics, for instance, has a stable arch that has further padding, providing additional support. Also, the arch can be increased, depending on the level of support required. Turf toes can be best treated with these extra pads, making it comfortable, as well as reducing the pressure transfer from the injured foot, elsewhere.
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8. Use slippers or sandals that have arch support
Among the other home remedies for turf toe, this one is of prime. Stay away from closed or tight shoes, but ensure that the footwear you wear has some arch support. This decreases the pressure on the ball of your foot.
- For first time injuries, it would be recommended to avoid practicing on poorly maintained fields. Also, refrain from running and jumping on hard surfaces. This must be applied for at least one month, post-injury, and serious conditions of turf toe must be rested for up to 3 months post-injury.
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It does take about two to four weeks for the pain to fade, but this can be reduced with the inclusion of some simple exercises, as it does not pressure the toe too much, but instead helps in strengthening the muscles. Ensure that before you undertake these exercises, you talk to your doctor about it: it depends on the severity of your condition. Also, if you want to undergo physical therapy to re-establish motion and strength, that’s well and good too.
- Towel scrunches: This exercise helps in strength, dexterity and flexibility. Place a towel on the floor, next to your feet and try gripping the towel with just your toes. Then, bring your feet to your hands and hold the towel. Try to keep your feet mid-air for at least a few seconds. Then, relax it and repeat for about 5 times.
- Pick-up exercises: You can do the same exercise using marbles. Put a bunch of them on the floor and use your feet to pick them up individually and drop them into a bowl. This helps in regaining strength and focusing on flexibility.
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Now that you have learnt the tricks and home remedies for turf toes, go ahead and try them out. Don’t forget to seek medical assistance should the condition not improve within 4 days of home treatment.