Signs You've Hurt Your Ankle
Severe pain in your ankle is a sure sign you've hurt it, but sometimes the signs are more subtle. The Stafford and Lake Ridge, VA, podiatrists at Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia share a few signs that may indicate that you have an ankle injury and explain how your injury can be treated.
Your ankle is rapidly getting bigger
Inflammation follows damage to your cells. Your body reacts to the inflammation by flooding your injured ankle with white blood cells in an attempt to kill bacteria or stop leakage from the cells. The moment you hurt yourself, your body springs into action, triggering a response called vasodilation. Vasodilation temporarily widens your arteries, allowing more blood and white blood cells to reach your ankle. The response also causes swelling, which can cause your ankle to puff up.
You've got a bruise
Bruises frequently occur if you've hurt your ankle. You may notice a bruise whether you've broken the ankle or sprained it. Bruises also occur due to the sudden surge of blood to the area.
Your ankle just doesn't look right
Your ankle may become deformed if you've broken it or it's been dislocated.
You heard a pop
Sprains are caused by torn ligaments. It's not unusual to hear a popping sound at the moment that the ligament tears.
You can't bend your ankle
Difficulty bending your ankle or foot may occur if you've broken or sprained your ankle.
You put pressure on the ankle
Putting weight on the ankle may be impossible if you've broken a bone or experienced a severe sprain.
Your pain gets better when you stay off your feet
If your pain improves when you rest but gets worse when you walk, you may have a stress fracture. The condition occurs when a small crack develops in a bone due to an overuse injury.
How are ankle injuries treated?
In most cases, wrapping your ankle to reduce inflammation and swelling, applying ice and staying off your feet will improve your symptoms. If it's been a week or two, and your ankle hasn't gotten a better, it's a good idea to call our Stafford or Lake Ridge office. Depending on the cause of your ankle pain, you may need a cast, walking boot, crutches or physical therapy. If your ankle is broken and the bones have moved out of position, surgery may be recommended. Surgery may also be needed if a sprain affects the stability of your ankle joint.
Are you concerned about an ankle injury? Call the podiatrists at Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia at (540) 720-0700 for the Stafford, VA, office or (703) 491-9500 for the Lake Ridge, VA, office.