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Ankle Sprains - Who, What, When, Where, Why And How?
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Ankle Sprain

What is it?

If you have twisted your ankle, and later it become swollen and exhibited pain, there is a pretty good chance that you have sprained it. But what is a sprain exactly? It is when the ligaments in your ankle have been stretched beyond their capacity and have either torn, or stretched beyond their immediate ability to return to regular length. They are typically easily taken care of, however some major sprains can become long term issues.

How do I sprain my ankle?

It occurs when the foot shifts angles in a rapid fashion. More specifically, when the weight of the body is set on top of the foot and is suddenly shifted, like the rapid motions that athletes do during sports, or for the rest of us, if we slip off of a curb or step out of the car the wrong way. The weight of the body causes the ankle to bend abruptly and thus stretches the ligaments before they were prepared to move, or just faster than they are designed to move.

Symptoms, or how do I know it’s sprained?

Well, for the most part, you’ll probably know pretty quick. It is pretty painful and if the pain in the feet doesn’t return to normal, chances are, you’ve sprained it. Additionally, if the ankle begins to swell, that is usually a pretty good sign. Furthermore, sometimes the feet will also exhibit some bruising, this is indicative of a sprain as well. If the pain however is completely unbearable, or if there is no way to limp and walk, then it might be broken, you might want to see a doctor. Alternatively if you hear or actually feel a pop in the ankle, you probably sprained it.

Finally, how does one treat an Ankle Sprain?

Well, the first step is to stop stepping. Put your foot up and begin icing. This will bring the swelling down. Next, simply rest, stay off of your foot and give it a chance to heal. A compression can also help bring the swelling down and prevent you from twisting or turning the ankle and damaging what healing has occurred. If at any point the pain becomes way too much, you can also take a pain killer/anti-inflammatory, this will help for obvious reasons. Finally, if the sprain is really severe, you can wear a brace that will limit movement. Finally, there are things you can do to prevent future injury, like watching where you are walking.

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