What should I do when I sprain my ankle?

What should I do when I sprain my ankle?

Have you rolled your ankle and still get ongoing pain?

Or, does your ankle continue to “give-way” or not feel the same post injury? Ankle sprains are painful and inconvenient, limiting your mobility and daily activities.

At Leading Edge Physiotherapy we're committed to helping you recover from ankle sprain and get back on your feet. In this article, we'll delve into the causes, treatment options, and effective rehabilitation strategies for ankle sprains, providing you with the latest advice to support your recovery journey.

Causes of Ankle Sprains

Ankle sprains occur when the ligaments supporting the ankle joint are stretched or torn due to sudden twisting, rolling, or an awkward landing. The most common causes include:

  • ankle sprain

    Sport and Physical Activity

Participating in sports or activities that involve quick changes of direction, jumping, or uneven surfaces can put you at risk of ankle sprains. Sports like basketball, soccer, and trail running often see ankle sprains due to their dynamic nature.

  • Everyday Mishaps

Ankle sprains can also happen during routine activities, such as stepping off a curb or missing a step on the stairs. Uneven surfaces, inadequate footwear, and a lack of attention can contribute to these mishaps.

  • Weak Ankles or Previous Injuries

Individuals with weak ankles or a history of ankle injuries may be more susceptible to ankle sprains.

Treatment Options for Ankle Sprains

When it comes to ankle sprains, early and appropriate treatment is crucial for optimal recovery. At Leading Edge Physiotherapy, our experienced team of physiotherapists is dedicated to providing personalised care to help you overcome ankle sprains effectively. Here are some common treatment approaches:

  • ankle sprain RICE

    Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation (RICE)

Initially, it's important to give your ankle adequate rest, apply ice to reduce swelling, apply compression with a bandage, and elevate your foot to minimise inflammation.

  • Professional Assessment

Our skilled physiotherapists will assess the severity of your ankle sprain and develop a customised treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.

  • Manual Therapy Techniques

Hands-on techniques, including joint mobilisation and soft tissue therapy, can help reduce pain, promote healing, and restore joint mobility.

  • Targeted Rehabilitation Exercises

We'll guide you through a series of exercises aimed at strengthening the muscles around the ankle, improving stability, and enhancing flexibility. These exercises may include range of motion exercises, resistance training, and proprioception drills.

Rehabilitation Strategies for Ankle Sprains

At Leading Edge Physiotherapy, our rehabilitation programs are designed to not only aid in recovery but also prevent future ankle sprains. Here are key components of our ankle sprain rehabilitation strategies:

ankle sprain balance
  • Progressive Exercise Program

We'll gradually introduce exercises to restore range of motion, improve strength, and promote functional stability. These exercises may include ankle circles, heel raises, and balance exercises.
  • Proprioception and Balance Training

We'll incorporate exercises that challenge your balance and improve your proprioceptive awareness. These exercises help retrain your ankle muscles and reduce the risk of future sprains.

  • Sport-Specific Rehabilitation

If you're an athlete, we'll tailor your rehabilitation program to address the specific demands of your sport, ensuring a safe return to your chosen sport.

Approximately one third of patients who experience a lateral ankle sprain (LAS) still experience pain for over a year post injury, and up to 25% still experience pain after 3 years!!

This can be attributed to various reasons, however only ~50% of individuals who sustain a LAS seek medical attention. That’s 50% of people not performing rehabilitation!

At Leading Edge Physiotherapy, we understand the impact ankle sprains can have on your daily life and activities. Whether it’s returning to walking your dog around the park, or returning to elite sport, our experienced team of physiotherapists in our Adelaide clinics can help you move freely and pain-free! Through a combination of tailored exercises, manual therapy techniques, and targeted rehabilitation strategies, we strive to help you recover, regain strength, and prevent future injuries. 

Contact us today to schedule an appointment and take the first step towards a speedy and successful recovery from your ankle sprain.