There are few injuries that are as maddening as ankle injuries. While it’s “just” an ankle, it affects every step you take. And unfortunately, it can throw your whole training program off schedule for a lot longer than you probably want to admit.
Whether it’s a sprain, strain, or break, your ankle is going to need some serious RICE treatment. In case you’ve never had an ankle injury and have never met RICE, lucky you. But, now’s the time to heed the acronym.
Rest is probably the hardest part for an athlete.
Icing is generally recommended to be 15-20 minutes on the area, every hour, until swelling has subsided. Even after you’re well on its way to the ankle healing, however, you’ll probably find icing at least once a day will help improve flexibility and range of motion (not to mention continued healing).
Managing inflammation is also key to your recovery, especially in the first two to three days after the injury. Ibuprofen is typically recommended, even if not needed for pain, to help reducing swelling and improve blood flow to the injured area.
Ankle Injuries: Returning to Full Strength
The good news about ankle injuries is that most heal without invasive treatment.
The bad news about ankle injuries – well, besides pain and sidelining your training program – is that it’s common to re-injure your ankle before it’s fully healed.
The ankle, obviously a pivot point, is most likely to be injured when the toes are down and the heel is up in the air. Once you’re back on your feet, using an ankle support, ankle brace, or wrapping your ankle until it’s fully healed and feels stable again, can go a long way to prevent another ankle sprain or strain.
If you have questions about treating your ankle injury, contact us.