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Turf Toe

Turf Toe

Description Of The Injury: This injury is called turf toe because it generally occurs to athletes to participate in sports that use artificial surfaces. It usually occurs during a movement that requires the upward bending of the big toe such as kicking a ball. The hard grip between foot wear and artificial surface causes excess stress on the big toe as the body weight pushes forward onto the bending big toe. This leads to damage to the ligaments and inflammation.

Injury Symptoms: The most identifiable symptoms of turf toe is pain, swelling, tenderness and bruising of the ball of the foot and the big toe. This is also accompanied with a reduced ability to move the toe in its regular plane of motion

Additional Information

Home Treatments:

Turf toe usually responds well to the rest, ice, compression and elevation principle. The person should not perform any physical activity with the affected toe until it is fully recovered. Ice packs should be applied for the first several days, at 20 minutes per session, 4-8 times per day. wrapping the toe with bandage and elevating it above the chest level will help reduce the inflammation and swelling of the area.

Professional Medical Treatments:

If the turf toe is severe enough, a boot or cast may be advised for one to two weeks of use. Non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs may be recommended to reduce the pain and inflammation. In some cases, when conservative treatment has not proved beneficial, surgery may be considered.

Physical Therapy and Exercises:

Several exercises are used in the rehabilitation of turf toe. They are used to recover complete range of motion of the big toe and to return the toe to proper strength. These exercises include extension and flexion of the big toe and toe raises.

Exercise Techniques to Prevent Injury:

Prevention of turf toe mainly involves factors other than exercise techniques. This includes using hard soled shoes when using hard surfaces, using athletic tape to stiffen the big toe and reducing friction between foot wear and the turf.