What is an Ankle Sprain?

Most of us will have had a twisted ankle at some point in our lifetime. A sprained ankle means that the ligaments in your ankle have been stretched and possibly torn. Even though they 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 prevent ongoing ankle problems. Most ankle sprains happen when you make a rapid shifting movement with your foot planted. Often the ankle rolls outward and the foot turns inward. This causes the ligaments on the outside of the ankle to stretch and tear. An ankle sprain can range from mild to severe, depending on how badly the ligament is damaged. With a mild sprain the ankle may feel tender, slightly swollen and stiff. The ankle is stable and you are able to walk with mild discomfort. Severe sprains might included bruising, swelling, stiffness and walking is very painful, the ankle is unstable and may feel wobbly.

How we treat Ankle Sprains at Richmond Osteopaths

If the ankle sprain is mild you can use the R.I.C.E. method. Rest, ice, compression and elevation. Proper treatment and rehab after the onset of the sprain is very important. A lot of ankle sprains heal by themselves but they don’t always heal right, this can leave the joints stiff and weak and may cause discomfort in the knee, hip and lower back. Mobilisation and massage to the foot, ankle and calf ensure that they heal properly. Rehab improves the strength and stability of the joints and muscles in the foot.

Our advice

See one of our physiotherapists, osteopaths or sports therapists. Some ankle sprains only require one or two treatments whilst others may require more. There are 33 joints in the foot and ankle, we will check each one of them to make sure they are moving and doing their job properly.

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