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How to Treat a Sprained Ankle

No matter what sport you play, chances are you will sprain your ankle at some point. When it happens, it's important that you heal your injury properly so you can get back to playing! All you need to heal up is a little bit of rice - but not the kind you eat for dinner! Confused? Let us explain. R.I.C.E. is an acronym that stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation. It is aimed to reduce swelling within the first 48 hours of a mild ankle sprain.

Ankle Sprains - Rest

When an ankle sprain occurs, it is crucial that you rest it and avoid movement. You do not want to put any pressure on it, which can potentially make the injury worse. Use crutches to move around if need be.

Ankle Sprains - Ice Packs

To reduce the swelling, place a bag of ice or a bag of frozen vegetables over your ankle for roughly 15 to 20 minutes at a time, every other hour. Remember to put a rag between your ankle and the ice cuz you don't want to get frostbite. You might want to consider an over-the-counter pain medicine or anti-inflammatory medicine to ease the pain and reduce the swelling. But don't do that without your parent's permission!

Ankle Sprains - Compression

Compress your ankle by wrapping it in an elastic support bandage. The bandage needs to be firm, but should not be wrapped too tight since you do not want to cut off your circulation.

Ankle Sprains - Elevation

Make sure to keep your ankle elevated, especially at night when you sleep. A good way to elevate your ankle is to rest your leg over a stack of pillows. Just make sure it's not too high!

  • Remember, these steps are useful for mild ankle sprains. If the pain and swelling do not improve in the first 48 hours, make sure to see a doctor.
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