As the seasons change, new beginnings are underway. Children are back to school, fall sports and routines resume therefore allowing you to get back on track. Until an injury sets you back. No one plans for an injury or onset of pain, swelling and limitations. Although ankle sprains are very common, they are still a hindrance and can get in the way, as any injury can.
I had already chosen to write an article on ankle sprains this month; however, I didn’t anticipate experiencing one first hand! Last night, I rolled my ankle in as I stood up to put the baby back to bed. Again, that wasn’t part of the plan, especially in the middle of the night. After putting the baby back in her crib, I took an over-the-counter ibuprofen, applied ice and went back to bed.
The next morning, my ankle was stiff and slightly swollen, but tolerable enough to walk on unassisted. Ascending and descending stairs was by far the most limited activity and slowed me down. Otherwise, I was able to continue about my day caring for my children. As a PT, I know what to do: rest (not an option when you are a mom), ice, elevate and compress. I did the best I could, given the circumstances. I continued with ibuprofen as needed, performed range of motion exercises and soft tissue massage. After putting the kids to bed, I elevated and iced my foot.
At the clinic, I added ultrasound and the laser to help with decreasing inflammation and stimulating healing, followed by soft tissue massage. Range of motion exercises, strengthening and stretching are also part of the treatment plan, along with balancing exercises and use of the BAPS board for improving control and proprioception (knowing where your body is in space). These are particularly important as I will be at increased risk for spraining it again without it. Especially with this being my second ankle sprain, it may take a little longer to heal but I expect to make a full recovery. If you have sprained your ankle and are wondering what you should or shouldn’t do, then schedule an evaluation with one of us. Being educated about your diagnosis can help speed up the recovery process.
By Effie Koustas, MPT