How to relieve a sprained ankle?
Having a sprained ankle unfortunately hurts a lot. In addition, it is very likely that crutches will have to be used for a fortnight. You won’t be able to put weight on your ankle and it will take time for it to heal. Here are 10 tips to relieve a sprained ankle and sleep better tonight.
1. Determine if it is a strain or a sprain
If your ankle is swollen and you can’t move it, or even worse, lean on it, it’s a sprain. Go see a doctor quickly. If it’s painful, but you can move it or lean on it, then it’s a strain. Put on ice and rest.
2. Put yourself to rest
If you have a sprain, you absolutely must not use your ankle. If you absolutely have to walk, ask someone for help or quickly ask for crutches. Your ankle must remain stable for 48 hours so that the injury does not worsen.
3. Ice your ankle
Apply some ice to your ankle. Put it in a towel first so it doesn’t get too cold. Leave the ice on your ankle for 15 minutes and repeat every 3 hours for the next 2 days.
4. Wrap the ankle in a bandage
The bandage provides protection to the affected ligament. It must be well wrapped around the ankle, without however tightening it too much so as not to cut off blood circulation.
5. Wear a semi-rigid brace
Instead of wearing a simple bandage, you can also opt for a semi-rigid brace. This will effectively hold your ankle.
6. Keep your leg elevated
Try to regularly keep your leg elevated. It should be at the height of your torso. This will prevent your ankle from swelling.
7. Sleep at night with a pillow under your leg
At night also it would be good to keep the leg elevated. To do this, sleep on your back with a pillow under your leg. Your leg should be a little higher than the rest of your body.
Convalescence will be necessary for the proper healing of your ankle. Depending on the damage caused by your sprain, you may need to recover from 2 to 12 weeks. But beware! That doesn’t mean staying in bed all that time! You will of course be able to move around with your crutches, but you should not practice any sport during your convalescence.
9. Strengthen the ankle
After recovering from your sprained ankle, it is certain that your ankle will remain somewhat fragile. Hence the need to strengthen it. To do this, you can stretch or do ankle movement exercises in the water.
10. Consult a doctor
You just sprained yourself. You put on a bandage, ice and sit down calmly. Next step: go see a doctor. The latter will be able to determine what kind of sprain you have; a mild, medium or severe sprain. You may have x-rays and the doctor will prescribe effective painkillers.