Bring Down The Swelling
The goal in the first few days post-injury is to control the bodys natural inflammatory response and slow down cellular activity. Applying ice for 20 minutes every hour for the first 2-3 days can help reduce swelling in the area.
An alternative method to traditional ice is Cryotherapy. You can talk to your Physical Therapist about using a Cryotherapy system to deliver therapeutic cold to your ankle. Ankle-conforming wraps can deliver consistent cold and ensure deeper penetration to your ankle joints.
Sprained Ankle Risk Factors
Certain people are more likely to sprain their ankles. Women, children, and teenagers tend to have more sprains. You might also be at higher risk if you:
- Play sports, especially on an indoor court
- Have balance problems
- Wear high heels or shoes that donât fit well
- Have weak or stiff ankles, such as because of a previous injury
What Is An Ankle Sprain
Most people have twisted an ankle at some point in their life. But if your ankle gets swollen and painful after you twist it, you have most likely sprained it. This means you have stretched and possibly torn the ligaments in your ankle.
Even though ankle sprains are common, they are not always minor injuries. Some people with repeated or severe sprains can develop long-term joint pain and weakness. Treating a sprained ankle can help prevent ongoing ankle problems.
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How Do I Take Care Of Myself
After treating your sprain with the PRICE method, you’ll need to build back flexibility and strength in your ankle. Perform exercises recommended by your healthcare provider or physical therapist to improve your range of motion.
Physical therapy exercises include:
- Strength training for the muscles and tendons in the front and back of your legs.
- Balance training to prevent future sprains.
- Endurance and agility exercises for calf and ankle strength.
Early exercises in your treatment plan will not require you to turn or twist your ankle, but over time, you’ll be able to get back to regular activities that may require sudden turns .
Caring For An Ankle Sprain
If you think your child has a rolled ankle, it is important to take him or her to a healthcare provider immediately, as sprains are difficult to differentiate from a fracture without an X-ray. If a medical professional determines that it is in fact a sprain, he or she will classify the sprain as a grade I, II, or III sprain and recommend appropriate care.
To care for a grade I or II sprain, doctors recommend following the RICE method:
- Rest the ankle and dont walk or put weight on it
- Ice the area to reduce swelling
- Elevate the foot above the waist or heart
- Compress the ankle to support the injury and control swelling
Although grade I and grade II sprains require the same care, it is important to note that grade II sprains usually require more time to heal.
Grade III sprains can put a child at risk for permanent ankle instability if not properly cared for. The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society states, For severe ankle sprains, your doctor may consider treating you with a short leg cast for two to three weeks or a walking boot. People who sprain their ankle repeatedly may also need surgical repair to tighten their ligaments.
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Rehabilitation In The Early Stages
It is okay to walk on a sprained ankle as long as it is stable enough to support your weight and without excessive pain. However, if you are not yet able to put weight on the joint there are gentle exercises you can do to keep your ankle limber in the first 48 hours. These include isometric and ROM exercises which cause contractions of the muscles around the joint. Whether passive or active , these should be done as much as tolerated for a few minutes at a time. Examples of ROM exercises are:
- Dorsiflexion and plantar flexion. This means moving your foot up and down.
- Tracing the alphabet with your toe.
- Toe curls- done by picking up a towel with your toes repeatedly.
Once you can tolerate some weight on the ankle, its time to focus on stretching, balance, and stability training. These exercises may help you to regain coordination in your ankle muscles, thus preventing recurrent sprains in the future. Some exercises you can do include:
- Towel stretches
When To See Your Doctor
Unless your symptoms are mild or improving soon after the injury, contact your clinician. He or she may want to see you immediately if your pain and swelling are severe, or if the ankle feels numb or won’t bear weight. He or she will examine the ankle and foot and may manipulate them in various ways to determine the type of sprain and the extent of injury. This examination may be delayed for a few days until swelling and pain improve in the meantime, continue with the RICE regimen.
X-rays aren’t routinely used to evaluate ankle injuries. Ligament problems are the source of most ankle pain, and ligaments don’t show up on regular x-rays. To screen for fracture, clinicians use a set of rules called the Ottawa ankle rules, after the Canadian team that developed them to identify areas of the foot where pain, tenderness, and inability to bear weight suggest a fracture. A review of studies involving more than 15,000 patients concluded that the Ottawa rules identified patients with ankle fractures more than 95% of the time.
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What Should I Do If I Sprain My Ankle
Ankle sprains are very common injuries. Sometimes, it is an awkward moment when you lose your balance, but the pain quickly fades away and you go on your way. But the sprain could be more severe your ankle might swell and it might hurt too much to stand on it. If it’s a severe sprain, you might have felt a “pop” when the injury happened.
A sprained ankle is an injury or tear of one or more ligaments on the outer side of your ankle. If a sprain is not treated properly, you could have long-term problems. A sprain can be difficult to differentiate from a broken bone without an X-ray. If you are unable to put weight on your foot after this type of injury, or if there is significant swelling, bruising, or deformity, you should seek medical treatment from a doctor . This may be your primary care physician or pediatrician, an emergency department, or a foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon, depending on the severity of the injury.
Tell your doctor what you were doing when you sprained your ankle. He or she will examine it and may want an X-ray to make sure no bones are broken. Most ankle sprains do not require surgery, and minor sprains are best treated with a rehabilitation program similar to your sporting activities. Depending on how many ligaments are injured, your sprain will be classified as Grade 1 , 2 , or 3 .
What Is The Difference Between A Sprained Ankle And A Broken Ankle
A sprained ankle is when the ligaments in your ankle are torn. A broken ankle or ankle fracture is when one or more of the bones in your ankle break. Severe sprains and fractures have similar symptoms and are both caused by twisting or rotating your ankle, tripping or falling, or trauma to your ankle. Sprains heal faster, but it can take up to six weeks for a broken ankle to heal.
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What Are Some Of The Symptoms Associated With Rolled Ankle
If an individual suffers a Rolled Ankle, then the individual will experience severe pain in the ankle. There will be visible swelling of the ankle and the ankle will have reduced range of motion. The severity of the symptoms will depend on the severity of the injury. In case of there is tearing of the ligament then the individual will experience ankle instability. In some cases, there will be complete dislocation of the joint.
How To Keep A Sprained Ankle From Becoming A Chronic Instability
Oh, I didnt twist it that bad
Thats something we often hear as orthopedic specialists, but the truth is, no matter how slight an ankle sprain, theres still potential for long-term injury and instability.
You wouldnt let a head cold go untreated give your ankles the same care and visit Dr. Leah Brown here at Urgently Ortho when youve sprained your ankle. Otherwise, you could be looking at a lifelong struggle with inflexibility and chronic pain.
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The Isometric Exercise Approach To Treating A Rolled Ankle From Home
Ankle injuries are more than just inconvenience if not treated properly, they can lead to severe pain and surgery. Thats why I created this rolled ankle treatment that you can do right from home!
The sudden pop during your morning walk or the tender soreness after moving the wrong way Rolled ankles are not to be taken lightly.
Many times, when we experience ankle pain, we rest a day or two, throw a brace on, and get on with our day. But it never really resolves the issue. The pain grows, forcing us to rest more or worse, take a trip to the doctor.
But, what if we could help ease the pain of a rolled ankle without visiting our overworked physicians? With the right isometric exercises implemented into our routine post-injury, we can do just that. Keep reading to learn my recommend rolled ankle treatment!
High Ankle Sprains Low Ankle Sprains And Chronic Ankle Sprains
Ankle sprains are classified as either high ankle sprains or low ankle sprains. The difference between a high and low ankle sprain is determined by which ligaments are damaged during the injury.
A high ankle injury is characterized by damage to the syndesmosis a fibrous joint connecting the tibia and fibula in the lower leg. High ankle sprains are typically the result of rapid external rotation. In other words, the front of the foot must be forced suddenly towards the shin to produce this kind of injury. Conversely, low ankle sprains are caused by inversion. During an inversion sprain, the ankle rolls inward, forcing the sole of the foot to rise and face the other leg. The majority of ankle sprains are low ankle inversion sprains. High ankle sprains often involve less bruising and swelling than lower ankle sprains, however, higher ankle sprains will normally take longer to heal.
Over time, torn or overstretched ligaments may lead to ankle instability. Unfortunately, a less stable ankle joint is more likely to sustain additional sprains and injuries in the future, creating a chronic issue. Both acute and chronic ankle injuries may lead to other conditions later in life, including posttraumatic arthritis, which accounts for more than 10 percent of all instances of osteoarthritis. For this reason, effective treatment and prevention are key to lifelong ankle health.
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How Are Ankle Sprains Treated
Treatment for an ankle sprain usually includes:
- protecting the ankle by taping, wearing a lace-up ankle brace, or ankle splint
- rest to prevent reinjury and limit swelling. How long somebody needs to take it easy depends on the injury. If no ligaments tore, 1014 days might be long enough.
- treatments to help with swelling such as:
- ice wrapped in a towel placed on the area for about 20 minutes every 12 hours
- an elastic bandage wrapped around the area or elastic sleeve to provide compression
- raising the injured area
Doctors may treat a more serious ankle sprain with a splint or temporary cast. Very rarely, a person might need surgery.
Easy Steps To Healing A Rolled Ankle
Ankle injuries are common with athletes and non-athletes alike. One of the most common injuries comes from what folks call rolling the ankle. An inverted ankle injury is the most frequent ankle injury and walking on ice in winter time is a common scenario of how/where these occur. Chiropractic, among other interventions, can help the healing process and prevention of additional injuries.
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How Do You Sprain Your Ankle
You can sprain your ankle doing just about anything even while merely walking if you catch your foot on a ledge and twist your ankle. However, most people sprain their ankles while doing some sort of recreational activity, such as hiking or rollerblading, or while playing a sport.
You may have referred to a sprained ankle as a twisted ankle or a rolled ankle, and you wouldnt be wrong for using those terms interchangeably. When you sprain your ankle, your ligaments get stretched too far because they were suddenly twisted or pulled sideways.
How To Strengthen Your Ankle After A Sprain
To recover from an ankle sprain fully, you’ll need to restore the normal range of motion to your ankle joint and strengthen its ligaments and supporting muscles. Studies have shown that people return to their normal activities sooner when their treatment emphasizes restoring ankle function often with the aid of splints, braces, taping, or elastic bandages rather than immobilization . Called functional treatment, this strategy usually involves three phases: the RICE regimen in the first 24 hours to reduce pain, swelling, and risk of further injury range-of-motion and ankle strengthening exercises within 4872 hours and training to improve endurance and balance once recovery is well under way.
Generally, you can begin range-of-motion and stretching exercises within the first 48 hours and should continue until you’re as free of pain as you were before your sprain. Start to exercise seated on a chair or on the floor. As your sprained ankle improves, you can progress to standing exercises. If your symptoms aren’t better in two to four weeks, you may need to see a physical therapist or other specialist.
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Anatomy Of An Ankle Sprain
The most common type of ankle sprain is an inversion injury, or lateral ankle sprain. The foot rolls inward, damaging the ligaments of the outer ankle the anterior talofibular ligament, the calcaneofibular ligament, and the posterior talofibular ligament.
Less common are sprains affecting the ligaments of the inner ankle and syndesmotic sprains, which injure the tibiofibular ligaments the ligaments that join the two leg bones just above the ankle. Syndesmotic sprains, which occur most often in contact sports, are especially likely to cause chronic ankle instability and subsequent sprains.
The severity of an ankle sprain depends on how much damage it does and how unstable the joint becomes as a result. The more severe the sprain, the longer the recovery .
Grades of ankle sprain severity
Mild pain, swelling, and tenderness. Usually no bruising. No joint instability. No difficulty bearing weight.
Moderate pain, swelling, and tenderness. Possible bruising. Mild to moderate joint instability. Some loss of range of motion and function. Pain with weight bearing and walking.
Full tear or rupture
Severe pain, swelling, tenderness, and bruising. Considerable instability, loss of function and range of motion. Unable to bear weight or walk.
Up to several months
Common Ankle Injuries: How To Treat A Sprained Ankle
Around the house, on the playing field, or somewhere in between, many of us will suffer a sprained ankle or two in our lifetime. In fact, its been estimated that approximately 28,000 Americans sprain an ankle each day. Interestingly enough, while ankle sprains represent nearly 10 percent of all emergency room visits, roughly 68 percent of people who suffer from them do not seek professional medical treatment. Many individuals are used to simply walking it off and may potentially return to play well before the injury has fully healed. This is truly unfortunate, because an ankle sprain may weaken the surrounding tissues, leading to ankle instability and increasing the chances of the injury occurring again in the future. A single severe sprain or a history of ankle sprains may set the stage for other conditions, including osteoarthritis, later in life. Of course, not all ankle sprains will require professional treatment, and there are many at-home remedies suitable for treating mild sprains. However, if a chronic condition does develop, it may require conservative care therapies or other treatments. At Sports Medicine Oregon, we specialize in a range of sprained ankle treatments and preventative care options, to keep athletes and other active individuals on the move.
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So Whats The Difference Between An Ankle Strain Vs Sprain
A rolled ankle, often called a twisted ankle, is an injury that happens when the ankle rolls, twists, or turns in an awkward manner. This can lead to either a sprained or strained ankle.
So, whats the difference?
Depending on the severity of the sprain or strain, your twisted ankle treatment may be the same!
Well cover how to understand your personal severity levels a little later in the article. But first, its important to understand your risk levels for rolled ankles and what can affect the healing time of each.
According to researchers at Sports Health, 14.1% of rolled ankle injuries occurred in 225,114 reported cases in 2010.
Although often untreated, research shows that these injuries can result in a loss of considerable time, since about 25 percent of those who sprain their ankles are unable to attend school or work for at least 1 week.