Did you actually sprain your ankle or could the problem be something else?
Whether you were just recently in a car accident or you were playing soccer with friends, there are many scenarios that could lead to some pretty unpleasant foot and ankle injuries. Our Manassas, Leesburg and Reston, VA, podiatrist sees it all the time. Of course, symptoms of a sprained ankle are similar to other foot problems so it’s going to be difficult to tell whether you have a sprained ankle until you come into our office. Find out more about sprained ankles and when to come in for a checkup.
What are the symptoms of an ankle sprain?
If you have truly sprained your ankle then you will notice swelling and pain almost immediately. You may notice some discoloration or bruising around the ankle, as well. If you try to touch your ankle it may even be sore or tender. You may also notice that the ankle feels stiff and is more difficult to move around. In more serious cases, you may not even be able to put any weight on the ankle.
There are different ankle sprain severities, from mild to serious. The severity of your ankle sprain will depend on the extent of the damage and just how many ligaments incurred damage. While ankle pain and swelling must certainly be checked out by our Manassas, Leesburg and Reston foot doctors, if you are noticing ankle instability (feeling as if the ankle might give out) this is considered a medical emergency and needs to be treated right away.
How is an ankle sprain diagnosed?
While you may be able to determine from the symptoms above that you do have an ankle sprain, the only way to get a proper diagnosis is by visiting us. We will discuss your symptoms, examine the affected ankle and even run X-rays to check the extent of the damage.
How is a sprained ankle treated?
In most situations, the RICE method is the best way to manage your symptoms while your ankle heals. If you aren’t familiar, the RICE method stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. Stay away from activities that could make your ankle worse or prolong your healing process. For up to three days after your injury, you can also ice the ankle for up to 20 minutes several times a day to keep swelling and pain down.
Wrapping the ankle can also help stabilize it while keeping swelling down. Make sure that when you are resting you are positioning your ankle above your heart to reduce inflammation. Only in severe situations will surgery be necessary for repairing the injured ligaments.
If you think you may be dealing with a sprained ankle in Reston, Manassas or Leesburg, VA, then you need to have the problem looked at right away. Call Reston Foot and Ankle Center today.