Treating a sprained ankle
A sprain is stretching or tearing of ligaments which are a band of fibrous tissue that function in connecting one bone to another in the joints and the most commonly affected is the ankle joint.
A joint sprain happens when the ligaments or tendons are stretched in unnatural directions like a trauma and an awkward movement that is common in athletes. Being overweight and having weak muscle will put an individual at risk to an ankle sprain. It is best to enroll in a class on first aid today.
- Swelling and a limited mobility of the joints
- Presence of pain
- A popping sound on the affected area
- Presence of bruising
A sprain happens when there is overextending or tearing of a ligament while causing stress in a joint and occurs in the following situations such as walking or exercising the ankle in an uneven surface. A sprain in the wrist can be caused by landing on as outstretched hand during a fall, pivoting on the knee when doing an athletic activity can cause knee sprain and thumb sprain can be caused by skiing or playing sports that uses a racquet like tennis.
Some other factors that cause sprains include poor conditioning that makes the muscles weak and more susceptible to injury. A tired muscle cannot provide good support for the joints while a tired muscle surrenders to the forces that causes stress on a joint or overextending a muscle and an improper doing of warm-up.
Treatment and home remedies
- Avoid doing activities that can cause swelling or pain, but do not avoid all physical activities. If pain is triggered when bearing weight on a sprained ankle, like peddle an exercise bicycle using one leg while the other injured ankle, rest on the footrest.
- Apply an ice pack on the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes and do this for several times a day for the first few days. Cold compresses will reduce the pain, swelling and sometimes bleeding.
- Compress the affected area with an elastic bandage in order to stop the swelling. Start the wrap at the end far from the heart. If the pain increases, loosen the wrap to prevent numbness and swelling that can occur below the wrapped area.
- In order to reduce the swelling, elevate the affected area above the level of the heart, during night time since gravity can help reduce the swelling by draining the excess fluid.
- Over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen can also help a sprained ankle.
Prevention of ankle sprains
Ankle sprains can be prevented by regular stretching and strengthening exercises for the sport, work activity and fitness can help minimize the risk of the individual from developing sprains.
Protect the joints on a long term basis by strengthening and conditioning the muscles around the joint that was injured. The best brace is the person’s own “muscle brace”. Additionally, use footwear that provides support and protection to the ankles.