Can a Small Fracture Get Worse?

Bones—we obviously all have them, and they’re what keep us upright and strong. This organ is not only strong and structural, but it’s also a dynamic, ever-changing part of the body. When they break, they often grow back even stronger, and they also grow back quickly.

However, if a fracture or broken bone isn’t treated the right way or in a timely manner, it can get worse. Our AFC Urgent Care Fountain City team further explains below, so keep reading!

What Is a Fracture?

What many of us refer to as a “broken bone” is actually a fracture. When a fracture happens, the bone either completely or partially breaks, both of which can be very painful.

A fracture can occur either directly across the bone or along its length, changing the form of the bone. Fractures come in a variety of forms, some of which we’ve described below.

Types of Fractures

  • Closed or open fractures: If the injury doesn’t open the skin, it’s called a closed fracture. If the skin does open, it’s called an open fracture or, perhaps more commonly, a compound fracture.
  • Complete fractures: The break goes completely through the bone, separating it in two.
  • Partial fractures: The break doesn’t go all the way through the bone.
  • Stress (hairline) fractures: The bone gets a crack in it, which is sometimes tough to find with imaging.

What Happens If a Fracture Isn’t Treated Correctly?

Although bones can heal remarkably on their own, a fracture will still need to be treated in order for it to fully heal. Stress and hairline fractures can result in a complete fracture if they aren’t treated, and other types of fractures can develop into nonunion fractures, which means that the body can’t successfully heal the fracture after at least nine months.

To prevent dealing with fractures and their potential complications, we’ve listed some preventive tips to keep in mind below.

Fracture Prevention Tips

  • Avoid falling. You can do this by doing simple things like working on your balance and decluttering your home.
  • Stay physically active. Aerobic exercise like walking and jogging helps keep bones healthy and strong.
  • Eat healthy. Watching your diet is one of the best ways to benefit bone health. Foods rich in calcium, like almonds, eggs and green veggies all promote bone health.

Whether you’re dealing with a broken bone or a runny nose, we can help you! Visit our AFC team today.