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Ankle & Foot Pain Treatment - The Ankle is the most frequently sprained joint in the human body. Know the treatment options so you can move better

The Ankle acts as the meeting point for the leg and foot bones and is subject to a lot of weight bearing activity. Bones, cartilage, ligaments tendons and muscles can be affected in any degeneration or sudden injury. Most common are Ankle strains, sprains and arthritis.

Common Causes Of Ankle Pain

A wide range of causes may to blame for your ankle pain, usually a sprain or strain will be easier to identify than osteoarthritis.

  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Avulsion fracture
  • Broken ankle/broken foot
  • Gout
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Sprained ankle
  • Stress fractures

Types Of Ankle Sprains

Sport or physical activity has a high correlation with ankle strains and sprains; sports tape can be used as a preventative measure, but may only offer some degree of support.

There are 2 types of ankle sprains:

Inversion Sprain

Most common is the inversion ankle sprain. It happens when your foot falls and twists towards your little toe and the outer ligaments are stretched too far. You will experience pain on the outside of your ankle.

Eversion Sprain

An eversion sprain is when your ankle falls and twists towards your big toe and the inner ligaments are stretched. You will typically have pain on the inside of your ankle.

ankle_pain

Common Symptoms Of Ankle Sprains

  • Swelling
  • Tenderness
  • Bruising
  • Inability to put weight on the affected ankle
  • Skin discoloration
  • Stiffness

Ankle Sprains can be extremely painful, sometimes requiring crutches, bruising is usually a way to quickly identify damage to the structure of the ankle. If bruising is visible, it is advisable that you make an appointment with a health professional.

How We Diagnose Ankle Sprains

Checking for range of motion is typically the first step in diagnosing the grade or severity of an ankle sprain. Finding out what ligaments have been impacted will determine the course of action.

Medical Imaging

To provide further clarification and to make an accurate diagnosis, the practitioner may use medical imaging tests

  • MRI
  • CT scan
  • X Ray

Using medical imaging tests can identify bone chipping and serious ligament damage, which is the worst case scenario in a rolled ankle scenario.

How We Treat Ankle Sprains

For mild Ankle sprains home remedies and care involves:

  • RICE: Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation
  • Using crutches (If you have a spare set lying around)
  • Taking an Anti-Inflammatory medication (Not recommended for more than 3 days)
  • Taking all weight off your ankle

The number one goal in the treatment of Ankle sprains is to prevent the reoccurrence of a sprain and strengthen the entire area with post injury rehabilitation exercises.

Practical treatment intends to promote optimal stability and range of motion. It can include:

  • Soft tissue mobilisation
  • Joint manipulation
  • Mobility exercises
  • Balancing exercises

Ankle Arthritis

Arthritis is the inflammation of tissues in the joints usually resulting in pain and stiffness. Osteoarthritis is the most common form and is usually a result of wear and tear. Ankle Sprains also have a part to play in arthritis with the ankle joint likely to become arthritic in the future if proper medical care at the time of the injury is not adhered to.

How We Treat Ankle Arthritis

Once you have been diagnosed Arthritis treatment involves the following:

  • Injections
  • Physical therapy
  • Water exercises
  • Orthotics