By Foot & Ankle Specialists of Orlando
July 12, 2018
Category: Foot Care
Tags: ankle pain   ankle sprain  

Sprained AnkleHave you ever sprained your ankle? At some point in your life, you probably have because it's one of most common lower extremity injuries Americans experience. Usually mild and what doctors call "self-limiting," this overstretching of connective tissue on the outside of the ankle can be serious. Your podiatrists, Dr. Timothy Mason and Dr. Jason Hancock, at Foot & Ankle Specialists of Orlando in Orlando and Oviedo, FL, urge you to know the signs of ankle sprains and what you should do it one happens to you.

You and your ankles

You and your ankles function together every day--walking, running, exercising, going up and down stairs. Made up of the tibia, fibula and talus bones and also fibrous ligaments and tendons composed of collagen, your ankles are strong. However, like any jointed part of your body, they are subject to injury from outside stressors.

For ankles, the more injurious of stressors is sudden sideways, twisting movement. That's why so many runners, dancers, and basketball players suffer ankle sprains. However, simply walking quickly down an uneven surface, such as a lawn, or stepping off a curb can sprain an ankle.

When you sprain an ankle, your ligaments and tendons, especially those on the outer aspect of the ankle, overstretch or even tear depending on the severity of the injury. When this happens, various symptoms show up and they should not be ignored. While most sprains heal well by themselves, some lead to chronic ankle instability and immobility. Your podiatrists in Orlando and Oviedo are fully qualified ankle surgeons and can tell if your ankle needs a surgical intervention of if less invasive remedies would suffice.

Signs you sprained your ankle

American Family Physician reports that 2 million Americans sprain their ankles each year. Commonplace signs of ankle sprains include:

  • Noticeable swelling and stiffness
  • Pain
  • Bruising
  • Redness
  • Tenderness to touch

Because major ankle ligaments stabilize the foot and leg when you stand, walk, and run, any injury to them limits the range of motion in the ankle and the ability to bear weight on the affected limb.

Treating ankle sprains

After an examination and X-rays at Foot & Ankle Specialists of Orlando, Dr. Mason or Dr. Hancock will outline an at-home treatment plan to allow your ankle to fully heal over the next several weeks. It can include:

  • Over-the-counter analgesics for pain
  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression with an elastic bandage
  • Elevation above the level of the heart
  • Stretching exercises
  • Physical therapy
  • Support with a walking cast and/or crutches for more severe injuries

In addition, your podiatrist will want you to strengthen your ankles with conditioning exercises. Many people sprain their ankles because they are not physically active and therefore, more prone to injury.

Contact us

If you suspect you've sprained an ankle, call Foot & Ankle Specialists of Orlando in Orlando and Oviedo, FL, right away for advice and a same-day appointment as needed. Phone (407) 365-9511 to speak to a friendly team member.