If you've broken a bone and find yourself in a cast, take proper care of it by following these simple tips and you will be well on your way to recovery!
Keep Swelling Down
A common side effect with many injuries is swelling. If your injury begins to swell while in a cast, it can create a great amount of discomfort. While taking the cast off is out of the question, you can elevate the injury above heart level to help reduce swelling and discomfort. Keeping your casted area elevated within the first 24 – 72 hours has proven to be very effective. After 48 – 72 hours you can also apply ice wrapped in a towel to the outside of your cast to keep swelling down.
Keep Skin From Itching
Casts can cause the skin underneath to get irritated and itchy. In order to combat the discomfort, try turning a hair dryer on a cool setting and aim it under the cast. If the itching does not subside, consider taking an antihistamine. Keep in mind that placing anything inside your cast to itch the affected area can cause further discomfort or even an infection.
Keep an Eye on It
While in a cast, performing regular inspections is highly suggested. Be on the lookout for cracks or irregularities that could potentially hinder the cast from healing your injury properly. It is also a good idea to keep an eye on the surrounding area around your cast. Be sure to let you doctor know of any warning signs that may be present.
Keep Cast Clean and Dry
Keep dirt and water away from your cast. When bathing, place your cast in a protective plastic shield to avoid getting it wet. Water could potentially weaken the plaster preventing your injury from healing properly. Take special care of your cast and do not allow any dirt to slip inside. This could cause further discomfort, irritation, or even an infection.
By taking note of these simple tips for proper cast care, along with your doctor's orders, your injury is more likely to heal properly.