How to heal a rolled or sprained ankle
A rolled ankle (or sprained ankle) is a very common injury within daily activities as well as sport. Sports that involve running, cutting, and jumping are at higher risk. So what happens when you do experience one, and how do you heal a rolled ankle?
A rolled ankle occurs when we land improperly, receive contact from someone, or take a misstep off an edge. When this happens the structures within the ankle (ligaments) that are used to provide support are stretched and blood vessels are popped as well. This is why we see swelling within the rolled ankle very quickly, as well as pain, and some feeling of unsteadiness later on.
How bad is it?
Although it is very common, and may seem scary at first there is little to worry about. Depending on the intensity of the sprained ankle, you may have experienced minor stretching of the ligament. You will experience swelling and some pain or discomfort. In rare instances we will see further stretching, or complete tearing of these ligaments.
How to heal a rolled or sprained ankle?
Regardless of the extent of the sprained ankle we can see a good recovery if the proper steps are taken. Early on it is important to follow the RICE principle – Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. This principle will allow time for the tissues and structures to heal. This allow the body to naturally begin the healing process. After the first 1-3 days it is important to start doing gentle movements in order to keep the ankle moving freely. Movement can prevent any further stiffness in the ankle. Following the next week it is important to begin some strengthening exercises along with balance exercises to provide support in the injured area.
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