The amount of time required for the complete healing of a broken bone can take anywhere from 6 weeks to 6 months.
The recovery time for a fracture is dependent on a vast number of factors including location and severity of the injury.
A fracture of the fibula, for instance, would relatively heal faster than a broken femur. Having a broken leg is a life-altering situation as basic physical and social functioning would be affected.
Hence, measures that promote rapid healing of fractures are highly beneficial. Listed below are six actions that can be taken to improve the rate of recovery for a broken leg.
Get Adequate Nutrients
The body needs adequate nutrients now more than ever as the healing process requires a lot of energy.
You should increase your caloric intake with emphasis placed on maintaining a balanced diet.
Foods rich in carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, and minerals should be taken abundantly. Fruits and vegetables should be consumed frequently as they are rich sources of vitamins and minerals.
Reduce the amount of food you eat that contains a high amount of fat and sugar. A rich and balanced diet helps to enhance metabolic activities, promotes the formation of new tissue, reduces inflammation, and improves the build-up of muscles around the site of injury.
Avoid Smoking and Alcohol Intake
Research has shown that smoking and excessive alcohol intake are significant causes of prolonged healing, non-union (failure of broken bones to fuse), mal-union (incorrect fusion of bone fragments) and osteomyelitis (infection of the bone).
Avoidance of smoking and alcohol intake during and after the recovery process ensures optimal healing, prevents complications, and improves the strength and density of the regenerated bone.
Immobilize the Affected Limb
Partial or total immobilization is essential for the proper healing of fractured bones. Placing weight on a broken leg or excessive movement without medical clearance usually results in complications which can further exacerbate the injury and prevent recovery.
Walkers, crutches, and boots should be used when prescribed to move or walk. Mobility vehicles such as electric wheelchairs can be used to move from one point to another and carry out activities of daily living. They provide a wider range of motion, improve mobility, and allow for independence.
Exercise is a significant factor that promotes the rate of bone healing. It improves the circulation of blood, thereby increasing the flow of nutrients to the site of fracture.
It also helps to burn off the excess calories that are accumulated in the body due to immobilization.
The intensity of the workout techniques should be increased gradually to prevent further injury or worsening of the fracture.
Though exercising the broken leg is usually accompanied by pain, all activities should be stopped once the pain becomes excessive or debilitating.
Depending upon the extent of the injury, the injured person can work out on their own or with the help of a physical therapist.
Follow Physician’s Orders
Follow the plan of treatment, medication regimen, exercise routine, and dietary recommendations provided by the doctor.
You should consult with a doctor before changing any rules and guidelines. Keep all appointments to receive appropriate medical care and prevent the development of complications.
Complaints such as fever, numbness, or tingling, excessive swelling, and pain should be reported to the doctor before any remedial actions are taken as they could be signs of infection or other complications.
Take Nutritional Supplements
Although the body gets a fair amount of nutrients from ingested food, there might be a need for the use of supplements to ensure the availability of adequate nutrients.
Drugs or other substances that contain calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, and phosphorus are greatly beneficial to the healing of broken bones.
Vitamins B, C, D and K improve the synthesis of collagen, absorption of calcium, production of antioxidants and binding of calcium molecules to bone tissues.
These supplements should be taken as required or prescribed to prevent the excessive build-up of the vitamins and minerals in the body.
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