Can You Walk On A Broken Foot With A Walking Boot?

If you have ever hurt your foot you know it will greatly impact your mobility until the injury heals.  When foot injuries require it a walking boot may be prescribed.  But can you walk on a broken foot with a walking boot?  We will answer those questions and more below.

So, can you walk on a broken foot with a walking boot?  Yes, you can.  A walking boot is used to comfort your broken foot while still allowing you to move around.   A walking boot or CAM boot has the extra support and cushion to allow your foot to take the weight by absorbing shock allowing for a more comfortable time walking.   With that said it is extremely important to listen to your doctor and the advice, they give you.  For one the first week of a broken foot will probably be more resting than anything but you need to listen to what your doctor tells you. 

Just because you wear a walking boot does not mean you should rest when possible to help promote healing.  There are things you should do if you have a broken foot that will provide comfort like wearing a CAM boot.  But still, listen to your doctor’s recommendations for the best results. 

Table of Contents

What's a walking boot?

A walking boot or CAM boot is a piece of equipment that is used to protect the foot during the healing process when a bone is broken, sprained, or after surgery.  These boots protect the foot with a cushion or air pockets and help the person walk with or without the use of other mobility devices like crutches, walkers, and canes.

These boots help make steeping more comfortable than without wearing one on the injured foot because of the ability to cushion some of the weight.

In severe cases of a broken foot, either a wheelchair or a knee scooter can also be used to get around until the process of healing is further along. 

What is a human foot made up of?

Your foot is comprised of three parts.  You have the hindfoot, midfoot, and forefoot.  The foot has a total of 107 ligaments, 33 joints, 19 muscles, and 26 bones in one foot.  Injury anyone of these parts can result in pain when taking a step.

What to expect when you break your foot

Some may think that their foot is broken only to find out that it is really a sprain.    This is because there are different severity of a broken foot.  So what is the most common symptoms of a broken foot?  Let’s take a look below:

  • Bruising
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Not being able to put weight on the foot
  • Bone sticking out of the skin 
  • Foot facing the wrong direction.

What is the average heal time for a broken foot?

You should know that the time it may take to heal completely will depend on how severe the affected bone was that you broke.  If you didn’t know the human foot has 26 total bones.  It only takes one of these bones to either broke or fractured.  The healing time will also depend on what bone you broke on how severe it is.  Typically the process can be from 12 to 15 weeks for the entire broken foot to heal.  You can walk on a broken foot with a walking boot though quicker if your doctor prescribes you to. 

3 states of the healing process

Injury Phase

Injury phase:  This level is where you will feel the most pain because of damage that was done to the bones, tissue, muscles, or ligaments.  Inflammation of where you got the wound or bone fractured stars.  Inflammation can last for a week or more depending on how severe the injury is. 

Stabilization

Your body will then try and stabilize the wound.  When you break a bone you will get clotted blood that goes around the bone that is broken and eventually that is replaced by cartilage and fibrous tissue.    The first stage of this cartilage formation typically is completed within three to six weeks.  But there is a second stage that forms hard bone and or callus.  This can take from six to twelve weeks from the time you fracture the bone. 

Stabilization

Your body will then try and stabilize the wound.  When you break a bone you will get clotted blood that goes around the bone that is broken and eventually that is replaced by cartilage and fibrous tissue.    The first stage of this cartilage formation typically is completed within three to six weeks.  But there is a second stage that forms hard bone and or callus.  This can take from six to twelve weeks from the time you fracture the bone. 

Bone remodeling

Bone remodeling is the final stage of the healing process.  The cartilage that formed in the above state now starts to turn into a hard callus.  This is where the fractured bone unifies.  This process could take years to come back to the original form before the break.  On average this takes twelve to fifteen weeks for the bone to heal.  this is the time frame that it could take to go running and walking.

What does RICE mean?

When I hurt my foot a few years back and had to go to the hospital I was told by my doctor that I needed to follow the RICE for at least the first week.  What is RICE? For those of you who don’t know it stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevate.  So to break this down further here is what this means.

  • Rest:  stay off of your foot as much as possible for the first few days. 
  • Ice:  For three times a day you want to ice your foot for 20 minutes. (Pro tip:  Have a couple of ice packs ready in the freezer for this)
  • Compression:  Your doctor can advise you here.  You may want to wear a boot to make your foot comfortable until your foot starts to heal.  After some time you could even wear a compression sock
  • Elevate:  This means you want your foot propped up over your heart.  This means lying down if you need to. 

The times you are up you can walk on your foot wearing a walking boot as the padding and air bladder if your boot has one will make the process more comfortable. 

Speeding up the process of healing so you can walk again

Wanting to walk on a broken foot faster than the average time?  Again, consult with your doctor but using a physical therapy program may speed the process somewhat.  They can devise a plan that will include a diet, the proper rehab, and other exercises that should be done.  when you follow the proper care of a professional you can heal the won’t quicker and get back to regular functions faster. 

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About ASmith

Adam Smith is the main researcher and contributor at Mobility Medical Supply. Adam has many years of research in public data, and software security. With Mobility issues within Adam's family, he decided to dedicate in-depth guides on mobility products to anyone looking to improve movement and gain independence.

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