Spraining an ankle can happen from all types of things - running, walking, slipping and falling, or from missing a step. You can sprain your ankle whether you're young, old, athletic, or not athletic at all. If you've injured your ankle in the past, chances are pretty good that you could re-injure your ankle again. This is because your ankles may be weak. Treating your sprained ankle is important for your road to recovery, and to help prevent spraining your ankle again. Read on for care tips if you've sprained your ankle.
Ankle Sprain Care
First and foremost, you're going to need to stay off of the ankle. Try your best not to put any weight on the ankle, so use crutches if you can, or stay off of your feet altogether if at all possible. Sit with your ankle elevated to keep swelling down and use an ice pack to reduce swelling as well. You can take an over-the-counter pain reliever to help ease the pain. Wrap the ankle with a wrap and secure it tightly. This can also help reduce movement of the ankle and prevent further injury.
Once the swelling subsides and the pain goes away you can try to put weight on the ankle. Try to do this slowly at first to prevent re-injuring your ankle. If you can walk on the ankle without pain, continue putting weight on it until you feel comfortable enough with the ankle. If you're an athlete, wait a week or two before resuming to regular activities, and even then you should do so with caution.
Sprained Ankle Prevention Tips
To prevent spraining your ankle again you will need to strengthen the ankle. This is going to require you to do some stretches and exercises in order to prevent an injury again. Calf raises can help strengthen your calf muscles and your ankles as well. Sitting in a chair and pointing your toes down towards the ground, then up to the ceiling can also help. Repeat pointing your toes at least 10 times. Walking up and down stairs can help improve your range of motion with your ankles, so doing stair steps can help your ankle. Jumping on a trampoline may also help strengthen your ankles. Think about using a small workout trampoline to strengthen your ankles. While jogging or doing other types of physical activities (such as playing sports), you may want to consider wearing an ankle brace to prevent twisting or rolling your ankle.
If you've sprained your ankle, visit your ankle doctor for help with your recovery and for tips to help prevent a sprained ankle in the future.