Ankle sprains: How to deal with them?

An ankle sprain is an injury to the bands of tissue, called ligaments in the ankle, usually on the outside of the ankle. Ligaments connect the bones together and provide stability. An ankle sprain appears when you twist your ankle by mistake. The severity of an ankle sprain depends on whether the ligament is stretched, partially torn, or completely torn. During physical activity, the ankle may also twist inward as a result of a hasty movement. Swelling or bruising can appear or you may also feel pain or uneasiness when you try to walk. Ankle sprains are very common and can happen at any age. Usually people doing sports are commonly confronted to this type of injury, but wearing inappropriate shoes or walking on uneven surfaces can also cause ankle sprains. Women wearing high-heels are also common victims of this common ailment. ...

Depending on the severity of the injury, some sprains need immediate medical attention, while some minor to moderate ankle sprains can heal on their own in a given time. Recuperation is crucial and should start right away. The following are recommended:

(1) Rest. You should avoid putting weight on the injured ankle, because walking may cause further injury.

(2) Ice. Apply and ice pack for 20 minutes and then wait at least 40 minutes before icing again.

(3) Compression. An elastic bandage may be recommended to control swelling.

(4) Elevation. Raise your ankle on a pillow above the level of your heart to reduce swelling.

(5) Early physical therapy. Your doctor may put you on a rehabilitation program as soon as possible to promote healing and increase your range of motion.

Your doctor may recomment nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, in order to reduce pain and inflammation. ...

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