Monday, November 27, 2023

How To Treat An Ankle Sprain

How Are High Ankle Sprains Diagnosed

How to Treat a Sprained Ankle

If you think youve experienced a high ankle sprain, see your doctor. They can diagnose the type of sprain youve sustained.

Your doctor will ask you to show them where youre experiencing the pain in your ankle. Then, your doctor will examine you to determine whether your pain is referred to another area of your foot, ankle, or leg.

They might squeeze your leg underneath your knee or rotate your leg and ankle toward the outside.

The location of your pain will help your doctor determine where the sprain actually is. Pain in the upper ankle ligaments tend to mean that you have a high ankle sprain.

Your doctor will also want to take some X-rays of your ankle and leg to rule out broken bones or other injuries. In some cases, you might have a fractured tibia, fibula, or bone in your ankle.

If your doctor suspects you may have further injury to the ligaments in your upper ankle area, they may order an MRI or CT scan.

When Is It Too Late To Ice An Injury

First and foremost, it is always important to ensure that you are taking proper care of your injuries. However, if an injury has not healed properly or if the pain is constant, then it may be time to ice it.

ice packs can be helpful in reducing the pain and inflammation, but do not overuse them as this could lead to more problems down the road. Always consult with a doctor before icing an injury for fear of worsening it.

Signs Of A High Ankle Sprain

Along with typical symptoms of an ankle sprain like pain and swelling here are specifics to look out for in the case of a high ankle sprain.

If youve experienced a high ankle sprain, you might be able to put weight on your foot and ankle, but youll probably have pain above your ankle, between your fibula and tibia.

Youll likely experience more pain when climbing up or down stairs, or engaging in any activities that cause your ankle bones to flex upward.

A high ankle sprain can also result in a fractured fibula.

If youve fractured one of the bones in your ankle along with a high ankle sprain, you wont be able to put weight on that foot.

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What Is The First Step In The Rice Regimen For Injuries

The first step in the RICE regimen for injuries is to identify the injury and to determine what type of injury it is. Next, the RICE regimen for injuries is determined. The RICE regimen for injuries includes rest, ice, and elevation. Additionally, the RICE regimen for injuries includes antibiotics if necessary.

What Causes An Ankle Sprain

Ankle Sprain Needs Immediate Treatment

According to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Association, people who play sports are at higher risk for sprains. But you dont have to be an athlete to experience a rolled ankle. Anything that causes your ankle to roll, twist, or bend at an abnormal angle can cause a mild sprain or worse. The Mayo Clinic finds that other common causes both in sports and otherwise- include walking on uneven surfaces, falling, landing awkwardly on your foot after jumping or pivoting, or having another person or object land on your foot.

These sports injuries are most often reported in tennis, basketball, football, soccer, volleyball, and cross country running.

Even if youre not an athlete or weekend warrior, you might be at a higher risk of sustaining a sprained ankle if you:

  • commonly walk on uneven surfaces
  • are in poor physical health
  • wear improper shoes
  • or have suffered foot and ankle injuries in the past

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Check If You Have A Sprain Or Strain

It’s likely to be a sprain or strain if:

  • you have pain, tenderness or weakness often around your ankle, foot, wrist, thumb, knee, leg or back
  • the injured area is swollen or bruised
  • you cannot put weight on the injury or use it normally
  • you have muscle spasms or cramping where your muscles painfully tighten on their own
A table explaining the differences between strains and sprains.

Torn or twisted ligament Overstretched or torn muscle
Most common in: wrists, ankles, thumbs, knees Most common in: knees, feet, legs, back

Sprained Ankle: When Can You Start Running Again

Once you are successfully moving the foot and walking without any pain, you can do a light test run. If you still have pain while running or are not completely ready to start, you can focus on the above-mentioned rehab exercises to restore your tissue capacity before taking up running again. If everything goes well, you canslowly increase the distance per day.


Proper recovery pays off in the long run! Even if it means taking extended time off, you can always slowly return to running after a break.

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Physical Therapy Sprained Ankle Exercises

Physical therapy is a popular rehabilitation treatment for severe ankle sprains, and it can also help prevent re-injury for those struggling with ankle instability and chronic ankle sprains. Physical therapy for ankle sprains focuses on strengthening the muscles of the foot, as well as targeting connective tissues to increase flexibility and range of motion. A physical therapist will create a personalized exercise regimen based on the injury and physiology of the patient. During the initial stages of treatment, the physical therapist will demonstrate how to properly perform these exercises. However, once the individual is comfortable, these exercises can be performed from the convenience and comfort of home. Physical therapy exercises should be performed daily for optimal results.

Whether you are struggling with ankle instability as a result of chronic ankle sprains, or have a child who has just suffered his or her first ankle sprain, there are many treatment options that can restore stability and prevent future sprains in the years ahead. At Sports Medicine Oregon, we offer a wide range of conservative care treatments, as well as surgical options when appropriate, to help athletes and active individuals achieve their activity and stability goals. Dont let ankle instability hold you back. Take the next step and minimize your risk of injury-related osteoarthritis today!

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How Long Should It Take To Heal From A Sprained Ankle

How to Treat Ankle Sprains (and What Can Cause Them)

There is no single answer to this question because how long it should take to heal from a sprained ankle depends on a number of factors. The severity of the injury, how much rest you get after the injury, the treatment approaches you take, and your overall health may influence how fast the healing process goes. In general, healing times are as follows:

  • Mild sprains: 1-2 weeks
  • Moderate sprains: 4-6 weeks
  • Severe sprains: 8-12 weeks6

In some cases, a severe sprain may require surgery or physical therapy to fully support recovery.

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A Pharmacist Can Help With Sprains And Strains

Speak to a pharmacist about the best treatment for you. They might suggest tablets, or a cream or gel you rub on the skin.

At first, try painkillers like paracetamol to ease the pain and ibuprofen gel, mousse or spray to bring down swelling.

If needed, you can take ibuprofen tablets, capsules or syrup that you swallow.

How Do I Take Care Of Myself

After treating your sprain with the PRICE method, you’ll need to build back flexibility and strength in your ankle. Perform exercises recommended by your healthcare provider or physical therapist to improve your range of motion.

Physical therapy exercises include:

  • Strength training for the muscles and tendons in the front and back of your legs.
  • Balance training to prevent future sprains.
  • Endurance and agility exercises for calf and ankle strength.

Early exercises in your treatment plan will not require you to turn or twist your ankle, but over time, you’ll be able to get back to regular activities that may require sudden turns .

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How Do You Treat A Rice Sprain


If you have a rice sprain, there are a few things you can do to help it heal and get better.

First, apply pressure to the area where the rice sprain happened. This will help increase blood flow and reduce swelling.

Second, drink plenty of fluids and take ibuprofen or aspirin if needed.

Finally, rest and ice the area for several hours after the injury occurs.

Can I Walk On A Sprained Ankle

Ankle Sprain

Perhaps this question is better phrased as, Should I walk on a sprained ankle? The general rule is that if you feel pain in your ankle when you put weight on it, you shouldn’t be walking on it. Use crutches for the first several days after suffering the injury, and then use an ankle brace or boot to provide support. Also, just because you can walk on a sprained ankle a week or so after the injury doesnt mean you should be running or trying to do other athletic activities.

If youre not sure which of these sprained ankle remedies is right for you, consult with a physician. Ask him or her about prescribing Game Ready to help control pain and inflammation while you recover.

Read Also: How To Know If You Fractured Your Ankle

Is Rice Treatment Still Recommended

There is much debate as to whether or not RICE should still be recommended for patients with diabetes. Some experts feel that the diet is ineffective and that it may even lead to weight gain.

Others believe that there are many potential benefits to using this diet, such as improved blood sugar control and reduced risk of disease. Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to follow RICE treatment should be made on a case-by-case basis.

Anatomy Of An Ankle Sprain

The most common type of ankle sprain is an inversion injury, or lateral ankle sprain. The foot rolls inward, damaging the ligaments of the outer ankle the anterior talofibular ligament, the calcaneofibular ligament, and the posterior talofibular ligament.

Ankle ligaments

Less common are sprains affecting the ligaments of the inner ankle and syndesmotic sprains, which injure the tibiofibular ligaments the ligaments that join the two leg bones just above the ankle. Syndesmotic sprains, which occur most often in contact sports, are especially likely to cause chronic ankle instability and subsequent sprains.

The severity of an ankle sprain depends on how much damage it does and how unstable the joint becomes as a result. The more severe the sprain, the longer the recovery .

Grades of ankle sprain severity


Mild pain, swelling, and tenderness. Usually no bruising. No joint instability. No difficulty bearing weight.

13 weeks

Grade 2

Partial tear

Moderate pain, swelling, and tenderness. Possible bruising. Mild to moderate joint instability. Some loss of range of motion and function. Pain with weight bearing and walking.

36 weeks

Grade 3

Full tear or rupture

Severe pain, swelling, tenderness, and bruising. Considerable instability, loss of function and range of motion. Unable to bear weight or walk.

Up to several months

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Is It Better To Rest A Sprained Ankle Or Walk On It

A sprained ankle is a common injury, and it can be tough to get back on your feet. Some people may choose to rest their ankle while others may try to walk on it. Both options have their pros and cons.

Resting a sprained ankle is usually better than walking on it. A Sprained Ankle is often inflamed, which can make it harder for the healing process. Resting an ankle will also help reduce inflammation and pain.

However, there are some potential drawbacks of resting a sprained ankle. Resting an ankle can lead to swelling and pain. Additionally, walking on the sprained ankle can cause further damage, which could require surgery.

High Ankle Sprain Vs Low Ankle Sprain

Chronic Ankle Sprains: How to treat.

Low ankle sprains are the most common type of ankle sprain. They happen when you rotate or twist your ankle toward the inside of your leg, which causes the ligaments on the outside of your ankle to tear or stretch.

High ankle sprains can happen when you have a fractured ankle bone. Sometimes, these can happen when the deltoid ligaments, the ligaments on the inside of your ankle, have been torn. You might feel pain in the deltoid area, in the ligaments of the high ankle, or even in the fibula.

High ankle sprains are also called syndesmotic ankle sprains after the bone and ligaments involved.

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Should I Use Rice For My Ankle Sprain

How you should treat your sprained ankle depends on the severity of the injury.

Mild sprains can often be treated at home. The traditional RICE method was once considered tried and true. But it may not always be your quickest route to recovery.

Some experts, including Dr. Gabe Mirkin, an early advocate of RICE and credited for coining the acronym, have reevaluated the benefit of rest over exercise and the need to ice a sprained ankle.

PRICE is another acronym for a method of managing injuries like sprains and simply highlights the strategy of protecting your injured limb along with rest, ice, compression, and elevation. It advises protecting or keeping the injured area still in the first moments, hours, and day of the injury.

Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care , mild exercise may help speed recovery after resting for a period of one or two days. A position statement published by the National Athletic Trainers Association indicated that gentle exercise is good for blood flow and that it helps speed up healing. Exercises that strengthen muscles in the calf and ankle can be helpful for improving balance and stability, reducing the risk of reinjury.

Start with gentle strengthening exercises. Dont continue with any exercise that seems to aggravate your symptoms. Talk to your doctor or physical therapist about the types of exercise that might be beneficial for you.

What Is A High Ankle Sprain

A high ankle sprain is a sprain in the upper ligaments of your ankle, above the ankle itself. These ligaments are attached to the fibula and the tibia, stabilizing the entire area for activities like running and walking.

When you damage or tear those ligaments often due to rotating or twisting your ankle youre experiencing a high ankle sprain. This type of sprain doesnt occur as often as a sprain in the lower part of the ankle.

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What Should I Do If I Sprain My Ankle

Ankle sprains are very common injuries. Sometimes, it is an awkward moment when you lose your balance, but the pain quickly fades away and you go on your way. But the sprain could be more severe your ankle might swell and it might hurt too much to stand on it. If it’s a severe sprain, you might have felt a “pop” when the injury happened.

A sprained ankle is an injury or tear of one or more ligaments on the outer side of your ankle. If a sprain is not treated properly, you could have long-term problems. A sprain can be difficult to differentiate from a broken bone without an X-ray. If you are unable to put weight on your foot after this type of injury, or if there is significant swelling, bruising, or deformity, you should seek medical treatment from a doctor . This may be your primary care physician or pediatrician, an emergency department, or a foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon, depending on the severity of the injury.

Tell your doctor what you were doing when you sprained your ankle. He or she will examine it and may want an X-ray to make sure no bones are broken. Most ankle sprains do not require surgery, and minor sprains are best treated with a rehabilitation program similar to your sporting activities. Depending on how many ligaments are injured, your sprain will be classified as Grade 1 , 2 , or 3 .

How To Relieve Ankle Pain

How To Fix A Sprained Ankle At Home

This article was medically reviewed by Troy A. Miles, MD. Dr. Miles is an Orthopedic Surgeon specializing in Adult Joint Reconstruction in California. He received his MD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 2010, followed by a residency at the Oregon Health & Science University and fellowship at the University of California, Davis. He is a Diplomat of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and is a member of the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons, American Orthopaedic Association, American Association of Orthopaedic Surgery, and the North Pacific Orthopaedic Society.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 92,071 times.

Ankle pain is caused by many different conditions including sprains, arthritis, gout, or nerve damage.XTrustworthy SourceCleveland ClinicEducational website from one of the world’s leading hospitalsGo to source The most common cause of ankle pain is a sprain. In many cases, ankle pain will heal on its own with home treatment. By following the RICE principle and trying medication and gentle movement, you can relieve pain in your ankle.

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How To Treat A Sprained Ankle At Home

A sprained ankle is something that can affect anyone at any age. Rolling or overstretching the ankles can lead to a sprain if the ligaments in your ankle are pulled hard enough. Sprained ankles are a common problem, especially for athletes. Since ankle sprains tend to happen when you’re running or jumping, playing volleyball, soccer or football are the top sports where athletes are likely to experience an ankle sprain.

Levels of ankle sprains

There are three types of sprains: mild, moderate and severe.

Mild: The ligaments in your ankle are stretched but not torn. You are still able to walk. However, your ankle is swollen and stiff.

Moderate: One ligament might be entirely or partially torn. Walking is painful, and the ankle is tender to the touch. Your ankle is also swollen and stiff.

Severe: Complete tears in the ligaments, making the ankle feel unstable. You cannot walkintense pain with severe swelling and bruising.

No matter the severity of your sprain, you should treat your ankle right away.

At-home ankle sprain treatments

Rest: The first step in treating a sprained ankle is to let it rest. Take the weight off it try not to move it too much and consider crutches if the pain is bad enough.

Elevation: The final step is to elevate the foot, preferably to above the heart level. The best way to do this is by laying down on a couch or bed with the foot resting on the armrest or footboard.

When to see a doctor after an ankle sprain

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