This Should Be Your First Step After Any Foot or Ankle Sports Injury
Whatever game you play or just enjoy being active and exercising, sports are activities that people generally enjoy participating in. Over 30 million teens and kids enjoy sports events in the United States. Among these participants, there are 3.5 million sports-related injuries that occur every year. The prevalence of injuries among adults who play sports is also significantly high. Foot and ankle injuries are especially common, which can put a person out of commission.
Knowing when these sports injuries are serious is important. This is why you should assess every situation carefully and then make an informed choice as to what your next move is. In this post, we are going to take a look at when your injury needs medical attention, as well as the first steps you need to take should you experience such injuries.
When Does a Sports Injury Need Attention?
There are several cases where injuries to the ankle or foot are mild and do not cause too much of a concern. On the other hand, you may sometimes experience a more severe injury. It is important to ensure you understand when you need to consult our doctors to get your foot checked out. If the injury is serious and you wait for too long, then certain complications can occur.
You should look out for the following symptoms, in which case it is necessary to contact our offices:
- A sudden and sharp pain upon suffering the injury.
- Excessive swelling in the foot or ankle after you have the injury.
- Symptoms that make it hard to walk.
When you have any of these symptoms after you injure your foot or ankle, then it is a good idea to have our podiatrists evaluate your foot and ankle.
First Aid for a Sports Injury
After you experience an injury, it is important to understand what first aid steps you should take. Taking the right steps can significantly reduce the risk of long-term complications, such as recurrent injuries or the development of arthritis.
We take a closer look at the first three things you should do if you experience a sports injury that affects your ankle or foot.
The first thing you need to do is stop the activity you are performing. If you play sports and experience an injury, continuing with your participation can make the issue much more severe. The moment you notice the injury, stop in your tracks and get off the field. This even accounts for situations where you are in the middle of a game. When you immediately stop playing, then you reduce the risk of worsening the injury that affects you.
Once you have stabilized your ankle and foot, the next step is to implement RICE therapy. The term “RICE” stands for “Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation”. It is a highly effective strategy that was designed specifically for recovering from an injury.
You need to rest your ankle and foot at an elevated height while also using an ice pack and compression on the injured region. Studies have shown that using RICE therapy for an estimated two to three days following the injury seems to produce effective results.
Sports Injury Treatment Afterward
After following the initial steps, it is important to ensure you implement the appropriate treatment measures later on to prevent further injury. You do need to continue with the resting technique, as this helps to facilitate the recovery process of your injury.
You can also turn to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to help reduce the symptoms that you experience. One study found that the benefits associated with the use of NSAIDs for ankle sprains outweigh the potential adverse reactions that are associated with these drugs.
Make sure you do not try to get back into the activity that caused the injury before it has properly healed. This can help to ensure you do not experience a recurrence of the injury when you return to the field.
Why You Need To Have Your Foot or Ankle Injury Evaluated
Different types of injuries can occur to the foot and ankle. The main elements that make up these parts of the body include cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. An injury that happens during a sports event can cause injury to any of these elements. Furthermore, injuries can include a strain, a tear in the tendon, ligaments that become sprained, or even a fracture in the bone.
Each of these injury types has different severities associated with them. Following an injury, you may be unable to tell what happened in your ankle or foot. This is why it is so important to ensure you have the injury evaluated by our professionals. A physical examination can usually tell our foot and ankle specialists if further tests are needed, such as x-rays, to determine if there is a fractured bone.
Our doctors can also help you better understand the injury that you endured, as well as provide you with the appropriate treatments to ensure recovery happens quickly. The treatments implemented by the specialist are also highly effective at preventing the injury from becoming worse or having a recurrence in the future.
Contact Us For Help!
Premier Podiatry Group P.C. is a family-friendly foot and ankle care facility that truly cares about every patient. We have two offices available where Carlos Barra and Maureen Ratchford stand by to help patients who experience pain, stiffness, inflammation, and other unusual symptoms in their foot or ankle. We are specialists when it comes to the treatment of injuries affecting your feet and ankles, and we can provide several treatment and rehabilitation services.
If you find yourself with one of these injuries, do not hesitate to contact us. Our specialists can perform a thorough investigation and offer you an accurate diagnosis. This helps to ensure the right treatment is provided the first time, speeding up recovery and helping you get back on your feet faster.