Sprained ankles are an extremely common injury. If you think for a moment, you probably know several people (maybe including yourself) who have experienced ankle sprains or recurring ankle pain. Often, runners experience a sprained ankle at least once in their lives. When you experience a sprained ankle, the pain and inflammation can significantly impact your life, and keep you away from the active hobbies you enjoy. |
The Ankle’s Anatomy
The ankle is a joint comprised on bones from the lower leg (tibia and fibula) and the foot (talus). The ankle is a hinge joint, along with the elbows and knees. Hinge joints can only move along one axis; the ankle allows for dorsiflexion, or movement of the foot upwards toward the shin, as well as plantarflexion, or the movement of the foot downwards – such as when pointing the toes. The anatomy of the ankle joint is most stable when in dorsiflexion. That means that, typically, patients will sprain an ankle when it is in plantarflexion. The soft ligaments play a more important role in supporting the ankle in this position, and are more susceptible to a tear or injury.
Ankle Sprain and Recurrent Injuries
It is common for foot bones to shift out of their normal alignment after an ankle sprain. Many physicians and therapists do not consider this issue when treating a patient for a common sprain. most patients, when they experience an ankle sprain, are advised to employ R.I.C.E. (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation) treatment, which can be effective at alleviating inflammation in the early stages of recovery. However, without correcting alignment issues that occur from the initial injury, patients can increase their risk for future injury and lasting discomfort. If the ankle joint remains misaligned, greater strain can be put on the surrounding ligaments, and cause recurrent sprains or chronic pain.
While most people believe chiropractors only treat the spine, they commonly treat musculoskeletal issues throughout the body. Depending on the patient’s injury or alignment issues, a chiropractor can provide one or more of the following treatments to relieve sprained ankle pain and prevent future re-injury: • Ice or Heat Therapy: In the early stages of recovery, ice or heat therapy, or a combination of both, can help to diminish swelling and improve painful symptoms. • Chiropractic Adjustments: Through careful examination, your chiropractor can determine whether your ankle, foot, leg, or spine is misaligned in areas which could be contributing to pain or possibly impeding a faster healing process. Careful chiropractic adjustments can improve circulation and restore healthy skeletal alignment. • Acupuncture: To reduce musculoskeletal dysfunction, decrease pain, and increase healthy energy flow, your doctor may suggest acupuncture treatment in addition to other complementary therapies or adjustments. • Home Exercise Programs: At-home stretching routines can improve the ankle’s range of motion and help to loosen tight ligaments and muscles which may be causing pain. Your chiropractor may recommend Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation or PNF; this treatment involves a combination of deep stretching exercises to improve flexibility and range of motion that have been inhibited through an ankle sprain. • Foot Support and Orthotics: Fallen or collapsed arches could contribute to ankle injuries. Orthotics and proper foot support for your lifestyle and activity level can help to improve comfort while on your feet and give your ankles needed support.
Learn More about Sprained Ankle Treatment
Dr. Cody Doyle, your Roanoke, TX chiropractor, can offer chiropractic treatment for sprained ankles that will not only improve your body’s ability to heal, but will help prevent future re-injuries which are common with sprained ankles. If you’ve recently experienced a sprained ankle or are simply looking for quality chiropractic care in the Roanoke, TX area, contact our practice! Dr. Cody Doyle was born and raised in the DFW area and has been practicing in the area for over 21 years. His personal approach means you receive a custom treatment plan – not a one-size-fits-all solution. To schedule your next appointment, call us at 817-767-5430.
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