1. R.I.C.E. Therapy
Using the R.I.C.E. approach to heal your ankle will prove to be most effective. method Use your crutches when walking to avoid applying pressure on the affected area. You’ll also want to apply ice to the ankle for the first 72 hours to reduce inflammation that is present. Using a compression wrap will also contribute to reducing the swelling and can be worn for the first 36 hours. An ACE bandage will work well to compress the ankle. Elevate the ankle above your heart you’re sitting or laying down will reduce bruising or swelling by increasing the blood circulation.
2. Stretch the Ankle
An ankle sprain can begin to heal by stretching the affected area to strengthen the muscles. Stretching can allow the joint to become more stable and can prevent injuries from occurring again in the future.
3. Perform Range-of-Motions Exercises
You can attempt to perform range-of-motions exercises depending on your level of pain. Trace the alphabet with your toe, which will move your ankle in all directions. You’ll want to trace the alphabet one to three times while sitting in a chair with your foot on the floor.
A side-to-side knee swing exercise can also be performed where you can sit in a chair with your feet on the floor while moving your knee from side-to-side. Practice the exercise for two to three minutes and keep your foot pressed flat.
Rubber band streches will also prove to be effective by placing the band around your forefoot and pushing your ankle down. Repeat the exercise 10 times. You can also use the band around your outer ankle and move the ankle down and inward.
4. Use an Ankle Brace
Use a supportive ankle brace to limit the amount of movement that you have and help the ligaments heal faster. The ankle brace can be used several days after the injury occurs once you begin to have more mobility. Avoid applying too much weight or pressure to the ankle to help it become stronger.
5. Soak the Ankle in Ice Water
Soak your swollen ankle in an ice tub for the first few days to alleviate the swelling. The cold water will penetrate the deeper tissues and will allow them to heal quickly. Later in the week, you can use warm water with empson salt to soothe sore muscles and connective tissues. Soak the ankle twice each day to alleviate the pain or discomfort that you experience.
6. Take Pain Medication
Pain medication will alleviate swelling and can also reduce the discomfort or pain that you experience until the ankle is fully healed. Use an over-the-counter product like Tylenol for pain relief unless your doctor prescribes a stronger medication.
7. Apply Natural Poultices
Consult your doctor if the pain or swelling persists and is not alleviated after one week. Natural poultices can be found in your kitchen pantry and contain anti-inflammatory ingredients. Some of the top poultices include garlic, olive oil, castor oil, turmeric, and onion. Heat the ingredients and apply them directly to the ankle in a bandage for two to three hours each time. Allow your ankle to rest while applying the ingredeints.