‘What is the best way to recover from an ankle sprain and prevent long term damage?’
Ankle sprains are one o
f the most common injuries we see in our physiotherapy clinics which can lead to long term problems if they are treated effectively from day one or not diagnosed correctly.
When a patient presents to one of our Benchmark clinics with an ankle sprain, a comprehensive injury assessment is performed to initially rule out any joint or bone-related problems. Based on these findings we then develop an individualised injury management program, which is key to reducing the likelihood of re-injury. This initial management aims to first reduce pain and swelling. A variety of treatments may be used but ankle joint mobilisation, soft tissue releases and stretches are typically performed. Depending on the severity of the injury some type of bracing may be also required
A functional rehabilitation and strengthening program will be commenced as soon as symptoms allow, but always under the direction and guidance of your treating physiotherapist. Common exercises used at the time of an ankle sprain include one leg squats, balancing single leg, wobble boards and various balancing and catching drills. These balance-based activities help to re-educate the balance sensors (proprioceptors) in the ankle, strengthen the damaged ligaments and ensure the muscles around the ankle are able to assist in supporting the joint.
Ankle sprains if not fully rehabilitated have a very high recurrence rate. To minimise the possibility of another ankle sprain it is essential that the joint returns to pre-injury range of motion and stability prior to the return to full activity or sport. Our physiso will guide you through this process.
Finally, ankle strapping and bracing may be recommended during sport and training for a period of time after the occurrence of your injury. This external support may be necessary to provide support to the ankle and also assists in providing extra feedback to the muscles around the ankle.
If you are experiencing ankle pain or recurrent ankle sprains contact your nearest Benchmark clinic today to speak to one of our experienced Physiotherapists about how we can help or visit our website for more information at www.benchmarkphysio.com.au