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Caring for Your Cast or Splint

April 23, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 215

Broken bones are certainly serious and painful injuries. They require immediate medical attention and continued care so that further complications do not develop. In the event of a fracture, your physician will most likely fit you with a cast or splint to support the broken bone and ensure that it heals properly. Although they are sometimes uncomfortable, casts and splints are necessary to properly hold your bones in place. To minimize any unpleasant experiences that could arise, it is important to take proper care of your cast.

Keep it dry: To avoid weakening the plaster and dampening the padding, which can lead to skin irritation, it is important to keep your cast dry at all times. Protect your cast while showering by covering it with plastic or waterproof shields.

Some splints are removable, but before attempting to do this, it is a good idea to ask your doctor first if it is alright to remove your splints before taking a shower. However, if you have a fiberglass cast with a quick drying lining, then it is fine to get your cast wet, since the materials of this type of cast can dry in about an hour.

Do not itch: As your bones heal, they begin to itch and while the urge to stick an object into your cast, and scratch the discomfort away can be unbearable, you must refrain from doing so. Sticking an object into your cast may irritate your skin, not to mention that excessive scratching may result in open wounds which can cause various complications including infection.

Resist the urge to scratch, instead, put your blow dryer on a cool setting, and run it over your cast or splint; the cool air will soothe the itch.

Keep it clean: Avoid dirt, and do your best to keep sand, powder, and other foreign objects away from your splint or cast. Dirt may cause skin irritations or even infections which can go undetected for some time, creating more complications.

Keep an eye on it: Inspect your cast regularly, and keep an eye out for any irregularities like cracks or soft spots. Speak with your doctor if you notice any changes in your cast. It is also important to keep an eye on the skin surrounding your cast or splint, and you should also see a doctor if it becomes red or raw.

Wearing a cast or a splint takes some getting used to, but your doctor should be available to help you every step of the way. Take proper care of your cast or splint, and recovery will be here before you know it.

Kitchi Joyce is the Director of Administrative Services for Southern Orthopaedics Specialists, a full service Atlanta orthopedic practice specializing in orthopaedic surgery and sports medicine. Southern Orthopaedics Specialists has multiple locations around the Atlanta Metro area where doctors, physicians and medical staff help patients live and perform at the peak of their physical ability. Decades of experience, education and research means that all branches of Atlanta orthopedics are covered, from cartilage restoration to spine care and sports medicine.

Source: EzineArticles
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