How To Approach Your Ankle Sprain Appropriately

Ankle Sprain

Inward Rolling vs Outward Rolling Sprains

All athletes who play sports with a heavy emphasis on running or pivoting are relatively likely to get an ankle sprain at some point in time. Generally, the most common type of ankle sprain will be one in which the ankle rolls inward. There might be a sharp pain on the outer tendons from an inner roll, but there usually isn’t much need for serious concern.

The sprain that requires the highest sense of urgency is when the foot rolls outward instead of an inward. An outward roll is usually serious enough to immediately incapacitate an athlete with distracting, immobilizing pain. It’s rarely severe enough to compromise an athlete’s entire career, but prompt ankle sprain treatment from a physician and proper rehabilitation techniques are essential for making a full recovery.

Ankle Sprain Swelling

Immediately following the occurrence of an outward rolling sprain, there will almost always be noticeable swelling. The swelling in your ankle after a sprain is caused by displaced ligaments. Even though human ankle ligaments are highly durable under normal conditions, hyper-extending or twisting them can cause ligaments to stretch out of place or completely snap.

Depending on the severity of the ligament damage, an ankle sprain can be categorized into one of three categories:

  • Grade 1: Hyper-extension of the ligaments without tearing
  • Grade 2: Some tearing, but not completely torn apart
  • Grade 3: The ligament has been completely torn

Elevation, Ice and Compression

The first recovery measure to take immediately after a sprain is to relieve it of unnecessary pressure. The athlete should take care to avoid putting their full body weight on the ankle for as long as possible, and if the pain is strong enough, using crutches may be a wise decision.

The athlete might benefit from icing the ankle periodically, which will take the swelling down considerably if done consistently enough. After the swelling has been slightly mitigated, an elastic bandage can be used to maintain the gradual swelling reduction.

Therapeutic Isometric Exercises

Once the pain has dwindled to a manageable level, the athlete may begin physical therapy by performing light isometric exercises. One isometric exercise can be performed by sitting in a chair (or the floor), straightening the leg outwards, and flexing ankle up and down. The athlete should avoid making any lateral ankle movements. Isometric exercises are designed to slowly facilitate a better rate of blood flow to the ankle.

Elastic band exercises

Another form of physical therapy can be performed by using elastic bands. Simply wrap the elastic band around the top of the foot, hold both ends in your hands, and slowly extend your leg out against the band’s resistance as far as possible. You may also tie the band’s ends around a heavy idle object and flex your ankle towards yourself, against the band’s resistance. Ten repetitions of both forms of elastic exercises should be more than enough.

Preventative Measures

You can lower the chance of spraining your ankle in the future by consulting a physician and asking about effective preventative measures. Your physician can evaluate your lifestyle and give you the plan to maximize your ankles’ safety during whatever activity that you physically exert yourself the most in.

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