Did your doctor recommend walking boots, and you are wondering whether you will still need crutches? What are walking boots anyway, and why the hell would they require crutches to function?
These are questions we often ask ourselves when out of the theatre for a foot issue, or after a severe sprain. Alternatively, you may have an illness that has weakened your lower body, hence temporal or life-time disability. The doctor will most likely present you with either or both of these options. You will need to learn to use them. The faster you learn the easier it will be for you, and also the faster the recovery.
Definitions of Walking Boots and Cutches
Walking boots are special shoes that you wear to aid you in mobility when you have a fractured, sprained or badly injured foot. It could be your toes, heel, ankles, or any other part of or adjacent to the foot. So, basically, walking boots are shoes, mostly made of hard plastic so as to help your tendons and broken bones recover faster.
Walking boots are have Velcro straps, a cushioning foam, and an adjustable part at the heel. All these are meant to ensure your foot is comfortable. Additionally, the adjustable straps make removing and wearing the boot simpler, without stressing the injured part.
On the other hand, crutches are special walking sticks that you use when your injury is severe. You use crutches when your doctor feels that you can walk, but your foot/ feet cannot bear the weight of your body yet. Hence, the crutches bear your body weight.
Crutches are made of either wood, carbon fiber, and polymer composite or metal alloys. Your body weight may dictate the type that best fits you. There are various types of crutches, based on how you hold them. They include underarm, elbow, and triceps. Each is described depending on the part of the arm that supports it.
So, now that we have the basics of the two walking aids in our topic, let’s skip to the main agenda.
Whether or not you need crutches with walking boots is a relative question. I will answer it with another query. How bad is your injury? This will give the correct answer to your satisfaction.
Read Also: 6 Best Walking Boots for both Men and Women
When Do You Need Crutches with a Walking Boot?
1. When the Injury is Severe
Walking boots not only aid you in walking, but they also present a design that realigns your broken or fractured bones. They restore the structure of the foot.
If the injury is really bad and severe, you will need crutches. Then why do I need walking boots if I have crutches? You may wonder. The answer is simple. Your foot still needs realignment, but it is not ready for your body weight.
If your injury can handle partial body weight, the doctor may recommend one crutch. Hence, you will distribute your weight between your foot and the crutch. This way, you will exercise the foot while not overloading it.
2. First time with a walking Boot
Walking boots are not as light as other normal shoes, due to the material type and also the size. So, having the boot on your injured foot for the first time may lead you to tumble and fall. This is bad for your foot.
To make things easier for you, use crutches to support you when walking. When with the crutches, you can try minimizing their use and walk more on the boot. Use the crutch whenever you feel feeble. Continue with this therapy until you are completely sure that you can do without the crutches. You will have learnt to create balance between the normal shoe and the walking boot.
3. When Both Feet are Injured
When both feet have been injured, then you will require crutches for support. Actually, you may even need a wheelchair most of the time. The crutches will only be for short durations when you need to exercise your feet, which should be minimal.
Yes, you read that right. You will be in walking boots to protect and cushion your feet while using crutches for walking. Your feet should bear the least bodyweight possible.
4. Long Distance Walk
You may still need crutches even after you are fully on a walking boot. Seriously? Yes, this is more so when you know that a certain walk will be tedious. Even over short distances, an injured leg is delicate.
Therefore, you should take your crutches along to support you whenever you feel the burden of the weight of your body.
When Do You Not Need Crutches with a Walking Boot?
1. When the Injury is Less Severe
If your injury is not severe, and your injured leg can take some body weight, then you can use a walking boot without a crutch or crutches.
2. When You are Almost Fully Recovered
You may start with crutches, then crutches with a walking boot, and finally the doctor will decide that you can just use a walking boot, based on the stage of your recovery. If your foot is no longer in pain after a short walk, and neither is it swelling, then a pure walking boot will be recommended.
Nevertheless, you should only use a walking boot on its own under the doctor’s prescription.
A Golden Tip: Getting the Walking Aids
In most cases, you want the crutches and a walking boot temporarily. Less than a year in most cases. So, why spend much when you don’t need these aids forever?
Visit sites like eBay, and you will find second-hand crutches and walking boots. It is unlikely that you will not get your size and preference for a cheaper cost.
Walking boots are meant to replace the crutches, you would argue. And this is totally true. Only that they do that when your sprain or fracture does not deserve crutches. The good news is that these walking aids, whether one or both, ensure you are not totally rendered immobile.
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