The ankle is a very complex joint and receives tremendous pressure as you walk. It is actually composed of three bones, the tibia, fibula and talus. There are many muscles and ligaments that are involved in motion of this joint. Ankle pain can be one of the most debilitating and long lasting pains a person can experience. Problems can be divided into 2 categories. Pain due to non-traumatic injuries and traumatic injuries: ankle sprain or fracture.
Problems of Non Traumatic Origin
This condition may appear suddenly or present gradually over time. There are a number of different ways this pain will present, depending on the exact cause. The pain can be on either the inside or the outside of the ankle and foot. It can be a sudden sharp pain, although it usually is a constant dull ache, related to activity. The pain will generally increase in severity over time and can start to limit your activity level. If the foot moves improperly there will be incorrect motion at the ankle joint and resultant pain due to stretching the ligaments and tendons surrounding the ankle. Having your foot and ankle move properly will alleviate many of the stresses placed on your ankle. Custom Orthotics from The Active Foot Store will provide tremendous relief of ankle pain.
Problems of Traumatic Origin
Some movements in sports such as basketball and soccer can put the ankle in an “inverted” position, which makes the ankle very vulnerable to sprain or even fracture. Ankle sprain symptoms vary depending on severity. An x-ray may be required to determine the full extent of the injury. Often, the ankle becomes tender, swollen and discolored. The ankle can be quite painful to touch. Walking is usually hampered and may become difficult, depending on the severity of the sprain. A feeling of instability may occur, especially in severe ankle sprains when ligaments are torn. Certain type feet are shaped in such a manner that they can be easily twisted or injured. Ankle Braces and Custom Orthotics from The Active Foot Store will provide more stability and reduce the risk of injury or chronic injury.
Treatment of Traumatic Injuries
- See your foot specialist as soon as possible. Often an x-ray or MRI study will be required to determine the extent of your injury. The ability to walk or participate in other weight-bearing activities during the healing process depends on the severity or type of ankle sprain. This can be determined by your doctor
- Initial treatment includes rest, ice, compression and elevation (RICE). The "RICE" method promotes healing, decreases pain, and reduces swelling around the ankle joint. In more severe cases, non-weight bearing activities are encouraged and crutches may be needed.
- Compression may be achieved with an elastic bandage. Compression decreases swelling and provides comfort, but it does not provide support. An Ankle Brace will need to be worn for several weeks, depending on the extent of your injury.
- Conservative treatment of many foot and ankle problems often promotes pain relief. For example, ankle-strengthening exercises following the injury help prevent recurrence of the injury. Most of these exercises can be done at home.
- Ankle Braces are especially helpful for individuals who wish to continue to participate in sports. If your injury is the result of the foot type (shape of the foot) that you have. A Custom Orthotic, made especially for you by The Active Foot Store will be very beneficial.
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