Don’t Let An Ankle Sprain Throw You For a Twist
Overstretching and tearing the ligaments that surround the ankle is a mishap that happens very frequently in the general population, with millions of strains and sprains treated every year. It’s very important to treat severe ankle sprains promptly and properly because improper initial treatment can lead to repeat injuries and chronic complications.
Ankle sprain injuries can run the gamut from just a slight twist to a more severe twisting, when the foot rolls completely over in an unnatural manner. If you are experiencing mild to moderate discomfort and limited swelling, while still having the ability to bear some weight without difficulty, then chances are the injury isn’t too severe and you can treat it at home with the RICE method - Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.
If you have suffered a serious tear to a ligament, with a noticeable instability of the ankle joint as a result, and you are unable to bear weight on the foot, then you have probably suffered a severe sprain requiring proper treatment. A major sign of a particularly severe ankle injury is that you will feel a sharp pain at the onset that is quickly followed by little or no pain at all, and a sense of numbness. The treatment for a severe sprain involves the use of metal or wood splints, a cast, or a special walking boot to immobilize the ankle. Depending on the severity of the injury, immobilization will need to be used for weeks or months for proper healing to occur.
After the primary healing phase is over, it will be absolutely vital to follow a strengthening and flexibility exercise regimen that includes balancing and range of motion exercises.
Your foot doctor can help you choose the right exercises for your injury and monitor your progress as you slowly strengthen your foot without causing a repeat injury. At Fit Feet for Life, our team of board-certified podiatrists has access to advanced technologies and years of experience to help diagnose and treat a variety of foot and ankle problems, including heel pain, sports injuries, toe deformities, nail fungus, and plantar warts. Bonnie Sanchez, DPM, and Gregory Cook, DPM, provide high-quality foot and ankle care to patients in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area at our five offices conveniently located in Sun City Center, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, and our two Tampa locations. Please contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.