Between sports activities, accidents at work, and even walking in heels, you may have experienced an ankle injury at some point in your life. Ankle injuries can be as simple as a strain or as serious as a sprain or break. While you may find many articles online about how to treat an ankle injury, it is best to see a professional to ensure that you will get back to your normal daily activities in no time. Below you find more information on if you can wait to treat an ankle injury, and what signs to look out for in terms of when you should see a doctor.
Symptoms That Require Medical Attention
While there are some ankle injuries that may be just fine in a couple of days, it is always important to get a medical opinion to be sure. The following symptoms should alert you that it’s time to see an ankle fracture specialist right away.
- Major swelling in your foot, ankle, and lower leg areas
- Tenderness to the touch
- Inability to walk or even put weight on your foot
- Bleeding or any break in the skin around your foot, ankle, and lower leg areas
- Color changes in the skin around the injured area
- Bone misalignment
Tips for Pain Management
While the symptoms above require that you get to a medical professional as soon as possible, you’ll want to manage the pain and swelling in the meantime. Talk with your doctor before you do any of this and follow their direct orders as they know your unique medical situation. The “rice” method is often used to help with pain management until you get to a doctor.
The “rice” method stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. The “r” is for rest as you should stay off your injured ankle as much as possible. Use crutches or have someone help you get to and from the bathroom. The “i” is for ice, and you can apply it for up to 20 minutes four to eight times a day to reduce your swelling and pain. The “c” is for compression, and under the advice of a doctor, you can wrap your ankle using a compression wrap or elastic bandage to help with the swelling. Lastly, the “e” is for elevation, and you should definitely raise your ankle above your heart to reduce swelling and pain.
Ankle Injury Prevention
While accidents happen and you cannot prevent every injury, there are steps you can take to help reduce your risk of an ankle injury. If you are playing sports, your risk of ankle injury is much higher. Be sure and stay hydrated, eat properly, and get enough rest. If you are deficient in any of these, they can diminish your reflexes and physical abilities. You should also warm-up before you exercise or play any games as this can help with your flexibility and balance.
If you are not playing sports, be sure and wear comfortable shoes that are supportive. You should also wear all necessary safety equipment if your job is physical as this can help reduce the risk of injury. It’s important to also stay in good health even if you are not an athlete, as the aging process can take a toll on your body and place you at a higher risk for injury.
Can You Wait to Treat an Ankle Injury?
If you have ankle pain, difficulty walking, or any of the other symptoms above, you should contact an ankle specialist in Ventura. The experts at Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. are skilled in treating foot and ankle issues. Their team is focused on setting you up with a treatment plan that works for you. They have a number of locations all over California, including Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barbara, Camarillo, Palmdale, and Westlake. Contact Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. today for an appointment!