Toes Woes

When last we heard from James, he was fixing his broken bike wheel with carbon fiber. Today’s post is much more organic; a broken toe.

Yes, I made it through an IronMan getting only a blister. I also received two blisters and a wicked sunburn at another triathlon. I got a scrape while wrestling an alligator.

Apparently, my bedroom is more dangerous than all of these. I misjudged the location of a piece of furniture as it related to the location of my feet. Perhaps I misjudged the location of my feet as they related to the furniture. In either case, I kicked the corner, forcing my toe sideways. Wolfgang Pauli’s Exclusion Principle (Two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time), was found to be intact. My toe, was left in a lesser state.
Human adults typically have 206 bones in their bodies. I suspect I’ve broken the middle toe on my left foot. Here’s why I think it’s broken:
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It hurts!
It’s swollen.
It’s bruised.
Did I mention it hurts?

I suspect if I attempt to move it, it will cause nausea. Frankly, I’m not inclined to move it.

What to do?
Option A: Go to the doctor. This is a GOOD idea! This provides medical advice, and the least amount of physical risk. The downside is, it’s pricey, and I’m pretty sure what will happen. They will take an X-ray, exposing me to radiation. They’ll look at it and say one of two things; It’s broken, or it’s not broken. Either way, they will tape it to the taller toe next to it, and advise me to take it easy.

(NOTE: I am NOT qualified to dispense medical advice. This blog is anecdotal, not prescriptive. I recommend always seeking the advice of medical professionals. That said, here’s what I did:)

Option B: I have tape. I’m reasonably certain it’s broken. Let’s tape it!

Two days later, I took the tape off, and yep, it’s pretty broken. It’s VERY bruised, and it looks like there was some internal bleeding.
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Here’s how I taped it:
I start with a strip of stretchy sports tape about as wide as my foot. I gently wrap the broken toe and it’s buddy together. Some people put a gauze pad between them. If this seems more comfortable, I say go for it. Don’t wrap too tightly; there needs to be plenty of blood flow to heal.

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Keep an eye out for fevers (which can be a sign of infection; go to the doctor!)
Elevate it to decrease swelling.
Ice on the first day to reduce swelling, then you can apply heat on following days to help speed up the healing.

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I skipped the ice and the heat, and helped my godfather move heavy machinery. I wore boots to protect my toes. I HIGHLY recommend thick comfy socks and shoes with a lot of toe room to help.

It’ll be a while before this heals. I may swim, maybe bike a little, but I don’t think I’ll be running. In the event that you break yourself, I hope you’ll seek medical advice, but if that’s not possible, this SHOULD keep your toe from falling off.

If your toe falls off from this advice, put it under your pillow, and the Toe-Fairy should be along shortly to exchange it for a treat.

Just kidding about the Toe-Fairy. Always seek professional advice, not just blogs!

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