Ankle sprains and injuries are common among the physically active. They can occur while running, jumping or even walking. Usually an ankle injury occurs when the foot twists inward causing the outer ligaments around the ankle to stretch and tear. Research shows that a majority of people who suffer an ankle sprain are highly likely to endure re-injury at some point in the future.
A vast majority of ankle sprains and injuries do not require surgery. Even in some of the most severe cases the ligaments can heal through effective ankle sprain treatment physiotherapy. This will allow the injury to heal rapidly. It is also necessary to avail the services of a physiotherapist as this will reduce chances of any complications. Repeated injuries will leave your ankle swollen and in pain and soon, normal activities like running, walking or just stepping off the curb could become difficult.
Common causes for ankle pain
One of the most common causes of ankle pain is sprains which occur when ligaments get overstretched or tear. These can vary in severity, from twisted ankles to complete ligament ruptures or even fractures. These injuries can occur at any age, usually when the foot lands awkwardly while running or jumping or while stepping onto an irregular surface. This can be corrected through ankle pain treatment physiotherapy. Some other causes for ankle injuries can be ankle instability due to previous injuries or tendon overload due to excessive exercise.
Osteoarthritis in older people can also occur due to wear and tear of the joint. Gout is another reason for ankle pain as this can affect any joint in the body and is accompanied by burning pain. Ankle pain can also be caused due to nerve related issues
Diagnosing ankle pain is not always an easy task and hence needs to be tailored as per individual needs. The main function of the ankles and feet is to provide stability when we move around, whether walking running or jumping. Feet and ankles are also the main components providing the body posture and balance. After an injury or sprain a physiotherapist or orthopaedic doctor will take the history of your ankle pain and conduct some special tests. They will also watch how the ankle moves to assess and diagnose the reason for your pain. It is only after a thorough examination that any treatment for ankle injuries is decided upon.
Physiotherapy and Ortho Rehabilitation for Ankle Pain
Whether you have twisted your ankle during a basketball game, stepped off the curb too hard or sprained your ankle while jogging, the problem can be addressed through ankle pain treatment physiotherapy. Once you have injured or sprained your ankle, the risk of a re-occurring injury significantly increases. However, the right approach will dramatically decrease this risk. Physiotherapy can strengthen the ankle, rehabilitate the affected part and through specialized techniques a re-injury can be avoided.
The treatment will vary from person to person depending on your injury and pain. The rehabilitation plan set by your physiotherapist will target your personal needs. Once the function improves, the treatment will get more advanced and will be divided into different phases. In the first phase focus will be on inflammation and pain. This will involve ice packs and gentle movements. A massage may also be prescribed to guide the excess fluid away from the ankle. It is necessary to get early intervention for optimal results.
Initial treatment has a simple guide – RICE- rest, ice, compression and elevation. You may be required to use crutches for the first few days so as to put minimum weight and pressure on the affected area. The doctor or physiotherapist may also prescribe mild pain relievers to ease the discomfort. Once you have regained some movement your treatment for ankle injuries will begin. Some light exercises and massage will help improve your range of motion. This will also prevent the development of poorly formed scar tissue around the injury.
The next phase will focus on bringing back the strength to your ankle, calf and foot muscles. When the healing process is complete the physiotherapist will want to address the reasons for the ankle injury or sprain so as to avoid a re-occurrence. If you have a high arch this can be corrected through appropriate footwear or if you suffer from poor balance then training could benefit you.
It is always important to have your ankle pain properly assessed and diagnosed so that the best ankle pain treatment can be prescribed. The appropriate course of action will depend on factors like your lifestyle, activity levels and the reasons for the pain or injury. Ortho rehab physical therapy targets strengthening of the foot and ankle, addresses balance issues and ensures that you reach your pre-injury or pre-pain levels of activity in the shortest time. It will also help reduce the risk of any re-injury.
If you are facing ankle pain, get an assessment at the AB Targeting Performance Center!