The ankle is formed by three bones: the tibia, fibula, and talus that are supported by ligaments. Since the ankle joint supports the weight of our entire bodies, ankle injuries are extremely common. Each year, approximately 2 million patients are treated for ankle injuries.
Common Ankle Injuries
Ankle Sprain: A sprain occurs when ligaments of the ankle are stretched past their normal range. This results in tears of the ligament that can vary between small rips to complete tears. Most sprains occur during activities such as running, jumping, or walking. Symptoms of a sprained ankle include: pain, tenderness to touch, swelling, bruising, inability to walk or stand, and joint stiffness.
Achilles Tendonitis: The Achilles tendon is located on the back of the heel where the calf meets the heal bone. Tendonitis occurs when repetitive use of this tendon results in little tears throughout the tissue. Common activities that result in Achilles tendonitis include: running, jumping, tight calf muscles, and excessively flat feet.
Arthritis: Both osteo and rheumatoid arthritis can affect the ankle joint and result in significant discomfort and pain.
Stress Fractures: A stress fracture occurs when muscles become fatigued and are unable to absorb added shock. Eventually, the overused muscle transfers the overload of stress to the bone causing a tiny crack. This crack is called a stress fracture.
Ankle injuries and disorders require a comprehensive rehabilitation program including rest, stretching, and strengthening.. Each step plays an important role in regaining function and making a full recovery after an injury.
Ankle First Aid:
RICE is an acronym used for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. The combination of RICE helps reduce inflammation that occurs after an acute injury. The early this treatment is applied, the more effective it is.
Ankle Stretching Exercises:
Stretching after sustaining an ankle injury is an important step in the rehabilitation process. After the long period of rest that is required following an ankle injury, the muscles around the joint often become shortened and tight. This results in a decreased amount motion around the ankle joint. To prevent further injury, it is important to begin gentle stretches of your ankle as soon as approved by your physician.
Ankle Strengthening Exercises:
Strong ankles are important for preventing as well as recovering from ankle sprains, strains, and fractures. Muscles help stabilize the ankle and protect the ligaments from injuries.
If you are suffering from an ankle injury, contact a B Enhanced osteopath today about how our treatment can help.