Top 6 Initial Steps for a Sprained Ankle
Getting sprains and strains in New York is common and may result in reduced working time, mainly when they occur due to your occupation. Your ankle is mainly affected as one of the main joints in your body, holding much weight and involved in many movements. You will tell you might have an ankle sprain when you experience pain and swelling. Although you can treat minor cases at home, it is crucial to understand the initial steps to ensure you are doing everything right. Here is what you can do if you suspect you are enduring an ankle sprain.
Understand the Severity of Your Situation
Before you take any action towards managing an ankle sprain, determine how severe the condition is. Generally, sprains occur in three grades. Grade one involves a slight ligament tear only causing mild swelling and tenderness. For grade two, the tear is partial, and you can experience moderate swelling and tenderness. Grade three involves a complete ligament tear causing significant swelling and pain. You might not require medical attention for a grade one sprain, but you cannot hesitate not to seek treatment for a grade three sprain.
Call Your Doctor
Although acute and moderate sprains might not require specialized treatment, it is crucial to consult your doctor to understand how to effectively manage your symptoms at home. If you realize your sprain is grade three, you need immediate medical attention, and you should book an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. If you cannot put weight on your ankle for about a day, it is time to call your doctor.
Rest Your Ankle
Resting your sprained ankle can eliminate acute and mild swelling and tenderness and bring down severe swelling as you plan your appointment with your doctor. Rest and avoid walking or putting any weight on your ankle until the swelling goes down. If you must walk, ensure you use crutches to walk to evenly distribute your weight and maintain balance. You can also consider braces for stabilizing and controlling the swelling when the ligament is healing.
You can reduce swelling and dull your pain by icing your ankle. Wrap a handful of ice or use an ice pack using a dry cloth and cover your ankle. Ensure you maintain the ice on your ankle for only twenty minutes and repeat every three hours until you experience satisfying results. Also, you can get a bucket of ice-cold water and immerse your injured ankle. But remember not to overexpose your ankle on the cold to avoid skin complications.
You can manage swelling by compressing your ankle using a compression bandage or an elastic brace. However, if you wrap your ankle, ensure you maintain the bandage dry throughout the day, and you hold it comfortably using medical tape or metal fasteners. Also, if you are icing your ankle, remember to remove the bandage. Additionally, monitor your toes and loosen the bandage should you notice your toes turning blue or feeling numb or cold.
If your pain does not reduce through icing or compression, consider taking over-the-counter medications. Drugs like naproxen, ibuprofen, and aspirin are strong enough to provide some pain relief. But consult your doctor before you take the medications.
If you suspect your ankle is sprained, do not hesitate to reach out to Precision Footcare for help. Remember to book an appointment even when your condition is mild to ensure any self-treatment action you consider taking is good for you.