How to Treat a Sprained Ankle

How to Treat a Sprained Ankle

An ankle sprain can cause a great deal of discomfort and limit your ability to carry out daily tasks. Nevertheless, with proper knowledge on how to handle this injury, it is easy to manage and recover from it.

Immediate treatment increases the likelihood of a speedy recovery without complications, helping you return to your normal routine in no time.

Symptoms of a sprained ankle

The symptoms of a sprained ankle can vary depending on the severity of the injury. They may include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Tenderness
  • Difficulty walking
  • Instability in the ankle

Self-Care & Home Treatments

No matter how severe your injury is, there are recovery strategies that you can start implementing at home to heal yourself properly. Self-care will boost your healing process, so strengthen your recovery strategies immediately. Most of these treatment options are simple and straightforward, but it's always good to ask a healthcare professional before anything else.

RICE Method


Every time you sustain an injury, it's important to allow for resting or recovery of the tissue damaged. For example, if you sprain your ankle, you should minimize putting weight on your affected leg and only increase activity once your doctor or physical therapist clears you to do so. Use pain as a guide for how much you should exercise.

Heat & Cold Therapy

Some pain may accompany new ankle sprains, swelling, and discomfort. As a result, cold therapy sacks can help those with new injuries feel better without medications.

Additionally, it can boost the effectiveness of the anti-inflammatory medication. As swelling diminishes, alternating between hot and cold therapy will reduce pain and improve blood flow for quicker healing and comfort.


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    SACKSY THYME Microwavable Hot & Cold Therapy Pad for Sprained Ankle:

    The SACKSY THYME Microwavable Hot & Cold Therapy Pad is versatile and can be used for sprained ankles in two ways. It can be heated in the microwave to provide hot therapy that increases blood flow and reduces pain. Alternatively, it can be frozen and used as cold therapy to reduce swelling and inflammation.

    Some people prefer cryotherapy to passive forms of icing, such as ice packs or gel wraps, which often consist of submersion in very cold water or cold air from a home-use machine. You must consult your medical provider before beginning any non-medical treatment for your ailment!


    Socks, wraps, and taping or other compression products applied directly to an injured ankle can yield benefits. Direct pressure helps alleviate swelling and promote better blood circulation while soothing the area.

    Compression itself may also help provide pain relief. Additionally, better awareness of how you're using your ankle can help prevent further injuries and promote optimal recovery.


    A sprained ankle is never fun. The ligaments in the ankle overstretch. This decreases the inherent stability of your foot and ankle, which may seem like a bummer, but it's a good thing because now you know you have to take care of it to prevent further injury.

    An ankle brace is an effective way to support you during all stages of healing as long as it doesn't cause constant friction or irritation.

    Stretches and Strengthening Exercises

    You may be feeling better, but before you get up and run around the block, it's necessary to ensure your ankle is in tip-top shape to avoid problems. Stretching will help with any sore muscles or tight joints in the area and bring them back to normal flexibility.

    Strengthening will build up your muscle tone again and restore coordination. Rest assured; our physical therapists would never let you overextend yourself - trust their guidance if they adjust your workouts to focus on specific goals.

    Wear Proper Shoes

    It's finally time to leave your house again and return to your routine. You've been recuperating from that ankle injury for a while, but now it's time to wear shoes again.

    But before you do so, we recommend talking to a podiatry specialist to ensure maximum comfort while wearing shoes again - especially when finding the right balance between support and flexibility!

    Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

    NSAIDs, like Aleve and Advil, can help kickstart recovery by reducing inflammation and providing pain relief. This can allow you to better tolerate your daily activities and other beneficial activities for your recovery, such as sleeping.

    Although these over-the-counter medications aren't ideal for long-term use, they are a great short-term option for boosting recovery. NSAIDs have risks for certain people, so talk to your pharmacist or doctor about what's best for you if you take any other medications.

    Professional Treatment


    When life gets stressful, and you feel like your body is aching, tense, and stiff, it's time to massage yourself. Whether you go to someone else or do it yourself, there are many benefits. You can get pain relief and some help for the swelling in your limbs (not that we advocate swelling).

    Massage therapy promotes good health beyond these physical benefits (massage also helps reduce stress). The techniques used in massage therapy include gentle, rhythmic motions, trigger points, and deep tissue massages. ​

    Physical Therapy

    Working with a physical therapist is a great way to maintain your recovery! You mustn't push yourself too hard if you are recently recovering from an injury. However, you also want to avoid sitting idle and letting yourself become too stiff and risk aggravating your initial problem.

    Exercise is a good way for this! Working with a physical therapist means you can build confidence in the strength of your injury over time, building up through consistency and planning. Making the right decisions about which exercises to do is the most important thing when it comes to maintaining healing.

    Therefore, one needs to make sure they're making those decisions by being aware of everything they're doing in their daily exercise routine!


    Ankle surgery can be both invasive and dangerous simultaneously. It's rare for patients to undergo it, and when it is done, it's only attempted if conservative treatment options produce bad effects compared to their benefits.

    You may need surgery if you find yourself dealt a blow to the ankle with little or no improvement despite other treatments' efforts. The most common procedure involved in ankle surgery is the "cinching" of damaged ligaments into better positions around the damaged areas to provide more support during healing.

    How to Prevent a Sprained Ankle?

    Here are some tips on how to prevent a sprained ankle:

    • Stretch regularly. Stretching helps to keep your ankles flexible and less likely to get injured. You can do ankle stretches as part of your warm-up before exercising or playing sports.
    • Strengthen your ankles. Strong ankles are less likely to sprain. You can do ankle strengthening exercises by standing on one leg or doing calf raises.
    • Warm up before exercising or playing sports. Warming up helps to prepare your muscles and ligaments for activity, which can help to prevent injuries.
    • Wear supportive shoes. Shoes that fit well and provide good support can help to prevent ankle sprains. Avoid wearing shoes with high heels or that are too loose.
    • Be aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to where you are walking or running and avoid uneven surfaces or obstacles.
    • Please don't overdo it. If you are tired, your muscles are more likely to get injured. Take breaks when needed, and don't push yourself too hard.
    • Use a brace or tape. If you have a history of ankle sprains, consider using a brace or tape your ankle for added support.

    Here are some additional tips for preventing ankle sprains:

    • Lose weight. Excess weight puts more stress on your ankles, making them more likely to sprain.
    • Improve your balance. Balance exercises can improve your coordination and make you less likely to lose footing.
    • Take care of your feet. Keep your feet clean and dry, and wear shoes that fit well.

    By following these tips, you can help to prevent ankle sprains and stay active.


    As ankle injuries are often commonplace for athletes, it is important to understand the tools and methods used in healing them without fail. As soon as you know that you have sustained an ankle injury, you must check with your doctor and inform them immediately of your symptoms so they can give you the best possible option for healing.

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