This is commonly a result of a twist of the ankle in which the ligaments are overstretched resulting in pain, swelling, bruising and an inability to put weight through the leg.
Repeated ankle sprains can lead to the ankle becoming ‘unstable’ as the ligaments are repeatedly damaged and the normal control of the joint is lost. Additionally, joints and nerves around the ankle and foot can be involved in combination with ligament.
In the acute (early) stages, follow the Peace & Love principles as shown below. This will allow for natural healing to prevent further damage and restore normal function. Early restoration of function is paramount to accelerate recovery as movement stimulates tissue repair.
In some cases, you will need more specific advice and guidance to achieve optimum recovery for your ankle, especially if you want to return to activities quickly.
Treatment for the ‘unstable’ aims at strengthening and reactivating the muscles around the ankle to compensate for the damage to the ligaments.
The more chronic ankle sprains are more complex and rehabilitation needs to consider how you move and what the rest of your body is doing. We start to limp to protect damaged tissues and this pattern is learned by the brain and thus the problem continues. It is not uncommon to see people who have had a chronic ankle problem for 10 years, but most resolve within a short period of time.