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Can an Ankle Sprain Heal Itself…

Whether we are participating in sports, running outside or just trying to step down off a curb, our ankle can twist into an abnormal position and cause swelling and pain. This is what is commonly referred to as a “rolled ankle” or ankle sprain and is one of the most common injuries that people experience. It is always a good idea to wear supportive shoes when being active and warm up prior to exercise. After exercising or walking, it is also important to stretch the calf muscles to prevent them from getting too tight. This will lessen the chance of having a foot and/or ankle injury. Sprains can be anywhere from minimal damage to a complete rupture (or tear) of the involved tissues. Do not neglect seeking professional help for your injury, because you think that it is “just a sprain.”

R. I. C. E.

The most important thing to do in the initial stages of injury (first 48-72 hours) is R.I.C.E., (rest, ice, compression elevate). Get off of your feet and rest, ice the ankle to decrease the swelling, wrap your ankle and provide compression, and elevate. Ice is always the best course of action after an immediate injury as it will manage the swelling and help with pain.

Your next thoughts might be one of two things:

  1. I have sprained my ankle plenty of times and I’m always fine after a couple of days.
  2. All I need to do is rest.

One of the primary reasons for recurrent ankle sprains is neglecting the proper healing process. While rest does have a role in the initial stages, in order to properly prepare the tissues of the ankle for the demands that they will face after injury a gradual return to activity and structured rehab plan is necessary. Once an ankle is sprained the chances that someone will sprain it again are raised dramatically. Fortunately there are steps that you can take in order to get back on your feet.

A physical therapist is a great person to see for any foot or ankle problem. At Loudoun Sports Therapy Center, we can assess the issue and educate you on the correct course of action. This will ensure you return to your normal activities as well as your recreational activities safely, and provide you with the knowledge and exercises to prevent re-injury!

Get your ankle sprain evaluated by a medical professional and take the first steps towards getting back on your feet. Call LSTC TODAY at 703-450-4300 and schedule your evaluation. 

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