Ankle sprains are not only one of the most common injuries, that can happen to anyone, but it can also be one of the most commonly wrongly diagnosed injuries, that is due to self-diagnosis. Most people misstep, twist their ankles, feel pain, and simply ice it, but doctors say the damage could be more significant.

When it comes to Ankle Sprain Services Blue Springs MO doctors say it may also be a fracture. Although they involve the same joint, fractures and ankle sprains are traumas of varying severity, often difficult for you to distinguish. There are common symptoms in both traumas, but one is much more severe.

Sprained Ankles

Both sprains and ankle fractures occur when the ankle is forced at an angle. If an ankle is sprained, usually, only the external part of the ankle is affected, but with fractures, the entire ankle is impacted. During a sprain, the ligaments extend without breaking, which deliver a sharp pain. This is only a mild form of a sprain. It hurts but it doesn’t compromise moving around for more than a day. With a fracture, a bone is cracked or broken.

It’s important to note that some sprains, like a class 4 sprain, can be more serious that a simple fracture. And doctors say, just because you can walk, it still doesn’t rule out a fracture. Differentiating between the sprain and a broken ankle is not always easy because the ankle is a complex joint. This is why doctors usually take an x-ray.

In a more moderate form of a sprain, there is usually a partial rupture of a ligament: the joint is painful, swollen, reddened and it is difficult to move or place pressure on it. Severe forms involve the complete rupture of multiple ligaments and immobilizing the ankle is necessary to avoid future problems.

How to Treat Ankle Sprains

After spraining an ankle, you should rest with the leg raised, and apply ice to control the swelling, and possibly take an anti-inflammatory, like ibuprofen. If you can move the ankle, and there is not much swelling or pain, it should improve after 24 hours. However, if you cannot move the ankle, then the trauma could be more severe. In either case, physicians say you should visit a doctor instead of relying upon self-diagnosis. If there is a unseen problem, it could heal improperly and cause more severe issues later.

Depending on the severity, immobilization of the ankle by wrapping it, or wearing a soft boot may be necessary. If sprains become a chronic occurrence, there could be a malformation that is not allowing stability of the foot, and a doctor will need to determine the best remedy.

What Can You Expect From Simple Ankle Sprains

Doctors will have you rest the ankle, keeping it elevated to decrease the swelling. Applying ice every 30 minutes for the first 48 hours will help with the healing, and ibuprofen for the pain. Most importantly, staying off the foot is the key to faster healing.