It’s easy to dismiss a sprained ankle as minor, but did you know your sprain can cause permanent damage if left untreated? Involving a podiatrist in your care as soon as possible can prevent serious complications and the need for surgery.
Contact the qualified podiatrists at one of six Starrett Podiatry clinics in your area, located in East Harlem and West Harlem in New York City; Brooklyn, New York; and Mott Haven and Belmont in Bronx, New York.
What is a sprained ankle?
Many people don’t realize that a sprained ankle isn’t just a pulled muscle, but the stretching or tearing of ligaments in your ankle and foot. These ligaments provide stability to your ankle, so when they’re stretched or torn, you face the risk of instability and future problems related to it.
What causes sprained ankle?
Most of the time, sprained ankles occur after sudden, shifting movements while your foot is planted. These movements are common in sports like soccer and basketball.
Why should I see a podiatrist for a minor sprain?
It’s imperative to see a podiatrist even if you can walk through the pain. Even a minor sprain can result in severe, permanent changes to your ankle, putting you at high risk of repetitive ankle injuries and increasing the likelihood that you’ll need surgery.
When should I see a podiatrist?
While many patients wait until they feel like it’s taking too long to heal or until the pain becomes unbearable, you should see a podiatrist right away if you want to adequately protect your ankle, promote healing, and prevent surgery.
Podiatrists specialize in all foot conditions, not only those severe enough to require invasive treatment. They can help you achieve a full recovery when you come in shortly after getting a sprain.
How is an ankle sprain treated?
The best treatment for an ankle sprain depends on the patient, the severity of the sprain, and other factors, and may include:
- Thorough evaluation and accurate diagnosis by a qualified podiatrist
- Measures to reduce swelling including icing, anti-inflammatory medications, and elevation
- Resting your ankle to speed recovery and prevent further injury, which may require the use of crutches for a period
- The use of custom orthotics or braces to stabilize the ankle while your ligaments heal
In severe cases or cases in which treatment wasn’t sought early enough, surgery might be recommended.
How long should I wait before scheduling an appointment?
You shouldn’t wait, even with a minor ankle sprain. Contact Starrett Podiatry immediately following a sprained ankle to schedule an evaluation; this can prevent the need for surgery, physical therapy, or extensive treatment.