Ankle Sprain Treatment
Ankle sprains are one of the most common complaints in the emergency room setting. It is very common to have a painful twist of the ankle and, generally speaking, the mechanism of injury is the same. Regardless of the actual injury, the ankle almost always twists inward and down. We call this a “plantarflexion and inversion” injury and it accounts for well over 90% of all ankle sprains.
When we discuss ankle sprains and strains, it is important to know what is meant by each of the terms. A sprain occurs when the ligament—tissue connecting two bones together—is stretched, torn, or ruptured. Sprains and ligaments go hand in hand, while strains are what affect the tendons—tissues connecting muscle to bone—of the foot and ankle.
The good news is almost all ankle sprains can be effectively treated with conservative care. Even a completely torn ligament can heal successfully without surgical repair if the proper steps are followed and the affected ankle is immobilized appropriately.
There are three phases in treatment for all ankle sprains:
- Phase 1 is to rest, protect the injured ankle, and control the swelling and inflammation.
- Phase 2 is to start using doctor-recommend exercises to restore flexibility, strength, and range-of-motion.
- Phase 3 is to start using maintenance exercises and gradually return to certain activities that do not require the ankle to twist or turn. Other activities will be slowly added over time.
A sprained ankle might not seem like a big deal, but returning to intense physical activity before it is healed can lead to chronic ankle instability. This means a weaker ankle that is more susceptible to sprains. As such, be sure to follow the treatment plan we provide for you!
If you live in the Frisco or Avon, CO communities, Eagle-Summit Foot & Ankle has the expert staff, state-of-art technologies, and convenient locations to provide the treatment you need to overcome pain and improve your mobility. Contact us for more information by calling (970) 668-4565 to reach our Frisco Station office, (970) 949-0500 to reach our Avon office, or simply schedule your appointment at either location online today.