A stubbed toe can be a very painful event.  If you have stubbed your toe on something, it’s possible that you may have either fractured it or damaged soft tissue surrounding the toe.  If you’re really lucky, you may not even bruise.  If you’re not so lucky, your toe could be broken.  When in doubt, visit your primary care physician or urgent care and get x-rays.  (A broken toe does not have to look disfigured in order to be broken.)

Take a close look at the injured toe.  Look for ruptured skin or a damaged nail.  If the skin is broken, clean the area with soap and water and apply an anti-bacterial ointment.  (It’s not necessary.  It’s a precaution for preventing local infection.)

Injured Toe, 3rd one. Swelling and redness on medial side.

There are numerous treatments styles and many of them recommend ice as a treatment for injured toes.  At August Point Wellness, we do not recommend ice on a stubbed toe.  Why? Because the toes are at a circulatory disadvantage being located at the most distal (and likely inferior) end of the body.  Circulation is imperative for the healing process and icing an injury improperly will constrict blood vessels and actually slow the healing process.  Sure, it could reduce swelling of the toe, but a reduction in swelling does NOT equate to increased rate of healing.

Here is an alternative treatment plan if you wish to take care of a minor stubbed toe injury naturally:

  1. Take arnica internally.  Arnica contains plant-derived anti-inflammatory compounds.  It is an alternative to ibuprofen.
  2. Warm the foot and toe in a footsoak bucket or a bath.  Use epsom salt and peppermint oil to reduce swelling.
  3. Massage the injured area.
  4. Apply a pain relieving topical ointment or bruise liniment to the injured area.  We recommend our own Sciaticare Penetrating Muscle Rub.  It’s based on traditional dit da jow herbal bruise and fracture formulas of China.  It’s 100% natural, safe, and effective.
  5. Elevate the injured toe and foot as much as possible until injury is healed.
  6. If very painful, splint the toe with the one next to it for the first week or two of the healing process.
  7. Wear stiff-soled shoes until injury is fully healed.  This is to reduce the excessive motion of the toe.

As you can see from the image above, the founder of August Point Wellness has suffered a stubbed toe injury.  Above is the actual protocol he is currently using for this injury.  Please note that the information in this article can be used to treat a jammed finger as well.