Most of you have twisted an ankle at some point in your life, so you are familiar with that awful feeling you get while trying to walk it off. 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. One of the many reasons for ankle sprains is playing sports that involve very fast moving lateral movements such as Soccer or Basketball. An ankle sprain can range from mild to severe, depending on how badly the ligament is damaged and how many ligaments are injured. With a mild sprain, the ankle may be tender, swollen, and stiff. A more serious sprain might include bruising and tenderness around the ankle, and walking is painful.
Dr. Robert Warkala says “For minor sprains, treatment can be done at home. I recommend the R.I.C.E method.”
- Rest – especially in the first 24 to 48 hours
- Ice – for the first 48 hours for 20 minutes at a time
- Compression – wear a brace or a wrap that is snug, but not cutting off circulation
- Elevate – above the heart as often as possible
“These steps will help you get back on your feet as quick as possible.” says Dr. Warkala. The RICE method is quite effective in treating a sprained ankle, but if you are looking for more stability and comfort while walking, a brace may be what you need.
In more severe sprains, you may hear and/or feel something tear, along with a pop or snap. You will probably have extreme pain at first and will not be able to walk or even put weight on your foot. Usually, the more pain and swelling you have, the more severe your ankle sprain is and the longer it will take to heal. If your sprain seems to be more severe and does not seem to recover from the R.I.C.E method it is important to seek medical attention and to be sure to stay off of your injured foot. As you look to heal from your injury one of our Doctors will be by your side assisting the whole way. We are here to help you!