How to Keep a Sprained Ankle from Becoming a Chronic Instability

Your ankles support your body and all your activity every day — give them the care they deserve by seeking care at Tola Foot

 It’s tempting to hobble around on a sprained ankle, hoping it will quickly heal on its own. As a podiatrist, Pamela C. Tola, DPM of Tola Foot & Ankle Center in Hamilton, NJ,

often sees patients limp into her office after walking and even running on a sprained ankle. We’re here to tell you why not to do that, even if you don’t feel a great deal of pain. No matter how minor a sprained ankle, there’s potential for chronic instability if it’s left untreated. 

Your ankles support your body and all your activity every day — give them the care they deserve by seeking care at Tola Foot & Ankle Center.

How sprained ankles happen 

Your ankle gets sprained when the ligaments get stretched too far, which usually occurs when your ankle is suddenly rolled or twisted. So a “rolled” or “twisted” ankle is the same thing as a sprained ankle. 

You might think that only athletes sprain their ankles, but the truth is, you can sprain your ankle just by walking. Think about how many times you’ve accidentally missed a step or caught your foot on a ledge or stepped in a hole — those are all ways you can sprain your ankle. 

Of course, you can also sprain your ankle while playing sports or doing recreational activities like skiing, skateboarding, or rollerblading. 

How to tell if you’ve sprained your ankle

It’s easy: The first sign of a sprained ankle is a pain. Sometimes, if the sprain is severe, there’s a popping sound or feeling when it happens. Immediately following a sprain, you will likely have trouble walking. 

You might have a sprained ankle if you experience: 

Left untreated, a sprained ankle can lead to: 

Keep your sprained ankle from getting worse

When you sprain your ankle, treat it with the PRICE method as soon as possible. You can do this at home while you make an appointment to see Dr. Tola: 

After you’ve taken care of your sprain with the PRICE method, contact Dr. Tola right away. She will evaluate your sprain by assessing your pain level, completing a physical exam of your ankle, and discussing how you twisted it. After diagnosing your sprain, she will recommend an appropriate course of treatment.

If you think you may have sprained your ankle, book an evaluation by calling (609) 416-9046, or request an appointment online here.