If an injured ankle doesn’t have enough time to thoroughly heal, the chances of a reinjury increase, experts say. Caring for an ankle sprain is essential to preventing a recurrence, and possible chronic pain. A sprain occurs when a ligament in the ankle joint is overstretched, resulting in tears of the tissue or, in severe cases, a rupture. Pain, swelling, bruising, and weakness in the joint are likely to occur. The first thing to do after incurring an ankle sprain is to stay off the foot. After being examined by a podiatrist to determine the severity of the sprain, a soft cast or protective boot may be prescribed. Bearing weight may be out of the question at first, and keeping the affected leg elevated as much as possible can speed up the healing process. Some type of pain medication is often prescribed, as well. The podiatrist may suggest certain exercises to strengthen the foot and ankle that can help to prevent future injuries and chronic pain. Patience is a necessary component of a permanent recovery from an ankle sprain, as healing can take as long as six weeks or more. For further guidance, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for a treatment plan.
Ankle sprains are common but need immediate attention. If you need your feet checked, contact one of our podiatrists from PA Foot & Ankle Associates. 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 take place when the ligaments in your ankle are torn or stretched beyond their limits. There are multiple ways that the ankle can become injured, including twisting or rolling over onto your ankle, putting undue stress on it, or causing trauma to the ankle itself.
What Are the Symptoms?
- Mild to moderate bruising
- Limited mobility
- Discoloration of the skin (depending on severity)
Preventing a Sprain
- Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
- Stretching before exercises and sports
- Knowing your limits
Treatment of a Sprain
Treatment of a sprain depends on the severity. Many times, people are told to rest and remain off their feet completely, while others are given an air cast. If the sprain is very severe, surgery may be required.
If you have suffered an ankle sprain previously, you may want to consider additional support such as a brace and regular exercises to strengthen the ankle.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Allentown, Easton, Northampton, and Chew Street in Allentown, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.