When you roll, twist, or turn your ankle awkwardly, you get a sprained ankle. The ligaments that help hold your ankle bones together may be torn or stretched as a result.
Ligaments aid in stabilizing joints and limit excessive motion. When the ligaments are pushed past their natural range of motion, a sprained ankle results. The ligaments on the outside of the ankle are injured in the majority of sprained ankles.
The severity of the injury determines the course of treatment for a sprained ankle. Although self-care techniques and over-the-counter painkillers could be sufficient, a medical examination may be required to identify how severely your ankle has been sprained and to choose the best course of action.
Depending on the severity of the injury, there are several signs and symptoms of a sprained ankle. They may consist of:
- Pain, particularly when putting weight on the injured foot
- Tenderness in the ankle when you touch it
- Movement restriction
- Ankle instability
- Popping sounds or sensations during the accident
If your ankle hurts and swells, and you think it might be sprained, call your doctor right away. Self-care techniques might be sufficient but consult your doctor to see whether you also need to have your ankle checked. You might have serious ligament damage or a broken bone in your ankle or lower leg if your signs and symptoms are severe.
When your ankle is forced out of its natural position, it can strain, partially tear, or totally tear one or more of the ligaments in your ankle, resulting in a sprain.
A sprained ankle may develop due to:
- A stumble that twists your ankle
- Landing uncomfortably on your foot following a jump or rotation
- Walking or working out on a ground that is uneven
- During a sporting event, another person steps on your foot or lands on it
You are more likely to sprain your ankle if you have the following factors:
- Playing sports. Sports requiring hopping, cutting, rolling, or twisting of the foot, such basketball, tennis, football, soccer, and trail running are especially prone to ankle sprains.
- Rough ground. An ankle sprain may be more likely to occur when jogging or walking on uneven ground or in unfavorable playing conditions.
- History of injury to the ankle. You’re more prone to sprain your ankle once you’ve already done so or after suffering another kind of ankle injury.
- Poor physical condition or being overweight. Sports participation may raise the risk of an ankle sprain if there is insufficient ankle strength or flexibility.
- Wearing unsuitable shoes. Ankles are more prone to damage when wearing shoes that don’t fit well, are inappropriate for the activity, or are high heeled in general.
- Fatigue. Muscles that are fatigued are less likely to offer strong support.