Ankle sprains occur when the ligaments which connect the bones in the ankle become overstretched or even torn. This is often a result of the ankle being twisted. Ankle sprains can range from mild, where the ankle is tender and swollen, to severe, where the ankle is unstable and unable to bear weight. Ankle sprains should be treated by a podiatrist because recurring or severe sprains can result in long term weakness and joint pain in the ankle. Depending on the severity of the sprain, a podiatrist may take X-rays of the ankle to make sure there are no broken bones. A podiatrist will also be able to guide the recovery and rehabilitation of the ankle sprain.
Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM from Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor 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
- 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.