Resolving Ankle or Inversion Sprains
Inversion sprain are the most common type and they cause pain along the outer side of the ankle. When you have your toes on the ground and heel upwards, your ankle’s ligaments are stretched and under tension, making them vulnerable to tear. If a sprain is not treated properly, you may develop long term problems. Depending on how many ligaments are injured, your sprain will be classified as Grade I, II or III.
To treat your ankle sprain, follow these guidelines:
Grade I: R.I.C.E guidelines
Give complete rest to your sprained ankle. Try and avoid using your sprained ankle and limit weight bearing.
Use an ice bag on the affected area to keep the swelling down. Ensure that you don’t ice more than 20 minutes at a time to avoid frost bite.
Compression helps control swelling as well as immobilizes and support your injury.
Elevate the foot by reclining and supporting it up above your waist or heart level as required.
Grade II: Restoring your ankle’s flexibility
For grade II sprains, follow the R.I.C.E. guidelines and allow more time for healing. A doctor or a physiotherapist may immobilize or splint your sprained ankle. This helps restore your ankle’s flexibility, range of motion and strength.
Every ligament injury requires rehabilitation. If it is not rehabilitated properly, then your sprained ankle might not heal completely and may get re-injured. If you don’t complete the rehabilitation, you could suffer chronic pain, instability and arthritis in your ankle. If your ankle still hurts, it could mean that the injured ligament has not healed right.
Grade III: Maintenance Exercises
Once your ligaments have healed, they still are vulnerable to any injury so you have to take utmost care of your sprained ankle. Once you can stand on your sprained ankle again, your physiotherapist will prescribe some routine exercises to strengthen your muscles, ligaments and increase your flexibility, balance and control.
Listen to your body and slow down when you feel pain or fatigue while exercising or training. Regular exercise can keep your muscles and ligaments strong. Therefore, whenever you twist your ankle, the sprain may not be that severe and also your strong ligaments may not tear easily simply.