There are approximately 20 million sprained ankle injuries in the United States each year. The team at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle Center, led by Matthew Paden, DPM, FACFAS, Dustin Kruse, DPM, MA, FACFAS, and Brett Sachs, DPM, FACFAS, offers diagnosis and treatment to help your body heal, including physical rehabilitation to lessen the recurrence of ankle injuries. Call or schedule an appointment online today.
A sprained ankle involves stretching or tearing the ligaments that hold your ankle together. Sprained ankles usually occur when you roll, twist, or turn your ankle in an unnatural movement. Unfortunately, if you severely sprain an ankle and it doesn’t heal correctly, it can leave your ankle weak, unstable, and more likely to be injured again.
Ankle sprains are painful, especially when you have to put weight on that leg. You’ll also notice swelling and bruising in the ankle.
Ankle sprains are common injuries among athletes. The jarring and twisting that damages your ligament may occur if you land from a jump incorrectly or change direction suddenly when you’re running. If you run cross country or are playing a sport on an uneven pitch, you can also take a bad step because of the terrain.
Your footwear can also increase your risk of an ankle sprain. For example, high-heeled shoes can make your ankles more vulnerable, as can wearing inappropriate shoes, like flat-soled tennis shoes to play soccer outdoors.
The podiatry team at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle Center has several years of training in foot and ankle injuries and treatment and offers aggressive treatments for sprained ankles to help you recover as quickly as possible and to reduce your risk of recurrent injuries.
Mild sprains typically respond well to the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) approach, and physical therapy, including range-of-motion and strength-building exercises, can restore your ankle. A moderate sprain may need some immobilization to keep your tendons in the correct position while they heal.
If you tear your ligament in a severe sprain and immobilization and physical therapy aren’t sufficient, your podiatrist may suggest surgery to repair the ligament.
The amount of recovery time needed for a sprained ankle varies depending on the severity of the injury. Mild sprains usually respond to treatment within four weeks, often sooner.
More severe injuries can take longer. For example, if you need surgery to repair your ankle, you may need several months of physical therapy to restore your strength and range of motion. However, if you follow the doctor’s instructions on physical therapy and when it’s safe to put weight on the injured ankle, you can support healing and reduce your risk of future injuries.
Call or make an appointment online today. If you think you have an ankle injury, a same-day appointment may be available.