An ankle sprain is always inconvenient, and often painful. But not all ankle sprains are equal in their severity. When diagnosing an ankle sprain, your doctor or chiropractor will classify the injury in one of three ways—first degree, second degree, and third degree. Knowing what each classification means can help you understand the nature of your injury and how careful you need to be with it. For you and your chiropractor, the classification of the ankle sprain degrees will help to direct the best treatment options.
Ankle Sprain Degrees and What They Mean
A sprain is an injury involving the stretching and/or tearing of your ligaments. With the ankle, it is possible to suffer an injury to either side of the joint, the interior or the exterior. You may have an inversion sprain or an eversion sprain. Whichever type you suffer from, it will fall into one of three categories:
A first-degree sprain is one where the ligaments have not torn, only stretched further than normal. Symptoms of a first-degree sprain include discomfort when jumping, jogging or sometimes walking. Pain is usually mild and swelling is minimal. The joint may be a little stiff and slightly less stable than normal.
A second-degree sprain is the most common type of sprain people seek medical care for. The ligament is partially torn, which can lead to several uncomfortable symptoms. The sprain will make walking difficult, be moderately painful and make it hard to use the ankle. The injury will result in noticeable swelling and often bruising.
A third-degree sprain is the most severe and involves a full tear of the ligament. Pain is often severe and swelling is significant. The torn ligament makes the joint unstable, so it is not only painful but also very hard to use.
How Chiropractic Can Help
Whether you are walking, running, jumping or just standing, the ankle plays a vital role in how you move and use your body. That is why it can be so frustrating when you find yourself with an ankle injury. Fortunately, ankle sprains do heal with enough rest and the right treatment.
Your chiropractor can help you recover from an ankle injury, both reducing pain and speeding up recovery time. There is research to support the use of chiropractic for ankle sprains. One study showed that patients with ankle sprains experienced less pain when chiropractic was added to their treatment program. Chiropractic also focuses on improving mobility and range of motion, which can be quite beneficial when trying to recover from a sprain and get back to your normal life.
Some of the most common chiropractic treatments for ankle sprains include:
Adjustments can be made to more than just the spine. The bones, ligaments, and tendons in the ankle are designed to work in a certain way. A sprain can knock the ankle out of alignment, something that most traditional doctors and rehabs do not consider. An ankle adjustment will work to put things back into their proper places.
There are a variety of useful exercises that your chiropractor can take you through to improve strength and mobility in the ankle. Things like a wobble board, where you stabilize yourself on a wobbly platform and drawing on a board with a market held in your toes can be surprisingly effective at strengthening your ankle.
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Please contact us today to schedule an appointment with a chiropractor for your sprained ankle. Let us help you get stronger and heal faster!