Tuesday, 26 April 2022 00:00

Ankle Sprains and Strains: Similar but Different

The words sprain and strain are very similar. So too, are several symptoms of an ankle sprain and ankle strain. Ankle sprains involve the ligaments which hold the bones of the ankle together and support it, while strains involve ankle muscles, often where the muscle attaches to a tendon. In a sprain, the pain is immediate and there may be bruising, while pain from a strain can sometimes come on gradually and a bruise is typically not visible. Both injuries can produce localized swelling, inflammation, and redness. Yet, there may be a noise—an audible popping sound the moment the ligament is injured—in an ankle sprain, which does not occur when you strain the muscles in your ankle. However, you may experience cramps, spasms, or weakness in the muscle when you’ve strained your ankle, which usually doesn’t occur if you’ve sprained the ligaments of your ankle. Both conditions can make it difficult or impossible to move your ankle or to place weight on it. If you are experiencing any type of pain, inflammation, redness, or swelling in your ankles, contact a podiatrist to have your condition properly diagnosed and treated.

Ankle sprains are common but need immediate attention. If you need your feet checked, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot and Ankle Center. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains take place when the ligaments in your ankle are torn or stretched beyond their limits. There are multiple ways that the ankle can become injured, including twisting or rolling over onto your ankle, putting undue stress on it, or causing trauma to the ankle itself.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Mild to moderate bruising
  • Limited mobility
  • Swelling
  • Discoloration of the skin (depending on severity)

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

Treatment of a sprain depends on the severity.  Many times, people are told to rest and remain off their feet completely, while others are given an air cast. If the sprain is very severe, surgery may be required.

If you have suffered an ankle sprain previously, you may want to consider additional support such as a brace and regular exercises to strengthen the ankle.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Egg Harbor Township, NJ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Ankle Sprains

Connect With Us