Boot Braces – What They Are, What They Do, and Who Needs Them?
A boot brace, known also as a walking boot or brace, is a type of footwear prescribed by doctors. This brace works to protect the foot and ankle from pressure or further harm after a patient has suffered an injury, or has undergone an operation in this area. The lessened pressure allows for quicker recovery, and the redistribution of weight helps to limit pain for a patient. If you’ve gone through any sort of injury to your foot or ankle, a boot brace may be on the cards – but you may find yourself wondering what wearing one is actually going to look like, and what you’re going to get from it.
To help you out, we’ve put together a quick guide to all the common questions and concerns people have about boot braces. Continue reading to learn a little more about what this medical footwear has to offer someone in recovery.
This blog answers all the frequently asked questions about boot braces, acting as a beginner’s guide for anyone who may be needing a boot in the near future. For more personalised advice regarding what type of brace you may need to be looking for, contact Muscle Joint Bone today to speak with an expert.
What Does a Boot Brace Look Like?
Boot braces can take a range of different forms. They can be tall, extending as far as the knee, or they can be short and reach around halfway up the shin. A shorter boot is often more comfortable, however the taller option works better to immobilise and effectively stabilise the foot and ankle. The different sizes and forms of boots are built to offer different types of support for different injuries. Your doctor will advise you on what specific brace is needed for your recovery.
What Does a Boot Brace Do?
Depending on your injury, a boot brace is able to offer many different benefits. There’s a reason they’re a reliable treatment option for all sorts of injuries and conditions! Ultimately, the key goal of a brace is to avoid too much weight being placed on your foot, minimising impact and risk of further harm. Some of the other goals of wearing a boot brace include:
- Immobilising a fracture or broken bone
- Increasing mobility
- Allowing for independence during injury recovery
- Assisting in rehabilitation
- Minimising pain
- Minimising the likelihood of further injury
- Supporting quick healing
When Do People Need a Boot Brace?
There is a wide range of different specific injuries that could lead to needing a boot brace. Some of the most common causes of patients being advised to walk with a brace include stress fractures, or other fractures to the foot, ankle, and shin. Walking braces are also sometimes used as treatments for ankle sprains, torn calf muscles, shin splints, or injuries to the achilles.
When Do You Wear Boot Braces?
Boot braces are there to help you walk and to avoid any weight being put on your foot. The specific advice of your doctor may vary, but generally you’ll find that whenever you’re mobile is when you need to be using your boot. Often, this provokes specific questions – such as whether your boot should be worn in the shower. Putting weight on your foot without a brace can aggravate your injury, so many people choose to put a plastic bag over their foot to keep it dry as they bathe.
But, there are other options available if you aren’t comfortable wearing your boot in the shower – such as removing the boot and sitting in a chair while in the shower.
Another question people commonly have is in regard to sleeping. Again, your doctor will advise you on what is expected for your specific injury, but commonly patients will sleep with their boot brace on. Loosening the straps will help to make this more comfortable, and should make it relatively easy to sleep. You can also surround the boot with pillows, offering extra support and minimising the risk of moving around and hurting yourself further. There are, however, sometimes other options recommended by a healthcare professional.
Are Crutches Needed with Boot Braces?
Crutches aren’t always necessary when using a boot brace. Sometimes, however, your doctor may advise you to use both. This is to ensure that no weight is placed on the foot whilst wearing the boot. In these circumstances, you will need to be using crutches consistently and continually, so long as your brace is necessary. Our best advice is to keep crutches close by and within reach, especially when sitting down, in bed, or otherwise resting. Having to put weight on your foot in order to walk over to the crutches will defeat their purpose entirely!
Contact Muscle Joint Bone Today to Enquire About Braces
Found yourself injured? Recently been through a tricky operation? If a boot brace is on the cards for you, we’re ready to help you navigate this process. At Muscle Joint Bone, our team of healthcare professionals has helped countless people to find their right brace, and guided them through how to best use their boot for the most effective outcomes. Contact us today to book an appointment and enquire about getting a boot brace.