About 25,000 ankle sprains occur in the United States every day. If not healed properly, an ankle sprain can lead to aggravating pain throughout other parts of your body. Recovering your ankle injury takes patience, but if you apply the appropriate steps to heal your ankle, the recovery is inevitable.
Recovering your ankle sprain
1) Restore motion and flexibility
Gently move the ankle up and down. After 5-7 days, start restoring the motion by turning the heel in and out.
Another key component is restoring the flexibility to your calf muscles. This can be done by facing a wall with one foot in front of the other and leaning forward with your hands on the wall. Then, bend the front leg and keep the back leg straight while having both heels on the floor. Lean forward and gently stretch your calf muscle.
2) Restore strength
When you recover about 60-70% of your injured ankle’s normal motion, start strengthening exercises. A great exercise is using a rubber tube for resistance. Tie one end of the tube to an immovable object (table leg, bed post, etc.) and loop the other end around the forefoot. Sit with your knees bent and heels on the floor. Pull your foot inward against the tubing, moving your knee as little as possible. Return slowly to the starting position, and repeat with the other foot.
3) Restore balance
Simply stand on your injured leg with the other foot in the air and hands out to the side.
Patience and following these three steps will help speed the recovery process and when:
- You have full range of motion
- Have near-normal strength in all muscles around the ankle
- Have good balance
- No pain or swelling with exercise/activity.
Then you can return to your favorite sport or activity. As your Bellevue healthcare professionals, we want you to have a speedy and successful recovery so you can participate in your favorite activities without pain. If you need assistance with your ankle sprain, please feel free to call us!