Tuesday, 28 June 2022 00:00

What Is an Ankle Sprain?

An ankle sprain, a common sports injury, is an injury to the ligaments or bands of tissue that connect the bones, and that help keep the ankle stable. Usually, there is a sudden twist of the foot, and the ankle rolls in and down. There may be an audible snap or crack and sudden pain when the ankle is sprained. Swelling and bruising can develop soon after and it may be difficult to walk. Athletes that do sports requiring quick changes of direction, such as in football or tennis, are more prone to ankle sprains. If an athlete has sustained a prior ankle sprain, they are at higher risk for another one. Those who do not give the ankle sufficient time to heal after a sprain are also at higher risk of re-injuring their ankle. Usually, rest, ice, compression, and elevation will alleviate the discomfort of a sprained ankle. Giving the ankle a chance to heal before putting weight on it is recommended. Simple stretching and strengthening exercises can be done to regain motion as the ankle heals. These exercises will also help to prevent re-injury. If you are an athlete who has sustained an ankle injury it is important to see a podiatrist to make sure it is not broken and for specific recommendations for treatment.

Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact one of our podiatrists from The Foot Institute. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains are the result of a tear in the ligaments within the ankle. These injuries may happen when you make a rapid shifting movement while your foot is planted. A less common way to sprain your ankle is when your ankle rolls inward while your foot turns outward.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Pain at the sight of the tear
  • Bruising/Swelling
  • Ankle area is tender to touch
  • In severe cases, may hear/feel something tear
  • Skin discoloration

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

In many cases, the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevate) is used to treat ankle sprains. However, you should see a podiatrist to see which treatment option would work best with your injury. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

It is important to ask your doctor about rehab options after you receive treatment for your injury. Stretching, strength training, and balance exercises may help the ankle heal while also preventing further injury.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our 3 locations located in El Paso, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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