More than 23,000 people a day seek treatment for ankle sprains in the U.S. While an ankle sprain may seem like a relatively minor injury, it can impact your long-term mobility if it doesn’t heal properly. With locations in Plainfield, Scotch Plains, Springfield, Linden, Edison, and Woodbridge, New Jersey, the experienced podiatric team at Garden State Foot & Ankle Specialists diagnoses and treats ankle sprains in children and adults. Call the nearest office or schedule an appointment online today to learn more.
Ankle sprains occur when the ligaments, or fibrous bands of tissue, that surround your ankle joints stretch too far. While ligaments give your ankles flexibility, they also stabilize the joints to prevent them from extending beyond their regular range of motion.
When you twist, fall, or roll your ankle, the ligaments can become damaged, making it difficult to walk or even bear weight on your ankle.
Experts typically separate ankle sprains into three separate grades:
A Grade 1 sprain happens when you stretch the ligaments in your ankle slightly too far. While there may be minimal tearing in the ligaments, your ankle should still be stable.
With a Grade 1 sprain, you typically experience tenderness, redness, and minor swelling, but you can still bear weight on your ankle.
If you have a Grade 2 sprain, the ligaments in your ankle are torn but intact. The pain and swelling is more severe than a Grade 1 sprain, and it may be too painful to walk.
A Grade 3 sprain is a complete tear of the ligaments in your ankle. Your ankle will be extremely painful and swollen to the point that you cannot bear weight on it.
Twisting or rolling your ankle doesn’t always result in a sprain, but if you have any of the following symptoms for more than a couple of days, call Garden State Foot & Ankle Specialists:
If you think you have a sprained ankle, the team may be able to make a diagnosis just by looking at it and listening to your symptoms. However, further imaging scans like an X-ray can help determine the severity of your sprain.
Rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) should always be your first point of action in treating an ankle sprain. If the RICE method doesn’t provide the relief you need, your sprain may be severe.
After an evaluation of your foot and ankle, the team at Garden State Foot & Ankle Specialists can recommend physical therapy, strengthening exercises, and splints to stabilize your ankle.
Custom-fit orthotics also add cushion and stability that can help you recover from an ankle sprain while preventing re-injury.
If you need further treatment after trying nonsurgical methods, it’s a sign you may have ankle instability from repeatedly damaging the ligaments in your ankle. The team performs arthroscopic surgical procedures to repair damaged ligaments without making large incisions.
These minimally invasive procedures typically result in less pain, scarring, and blood than open surgery, resulting in a shorter recovery period.
To schedule an appointment with the podiatric team for treatment of your ankle sprain, call Garden State Foot & Ankle Specialists or book online today.