Rolled or sprained ankles, a bad twist or fall, even fractures. All of these have one thing in common, ligaments. Ligaments are fibrous bands on connective tissue that join bone to bone and are responsible for guiding and stabilising movement of the joint. To assist those who have suffered an injury, we have collated some tips for ankle ligaments and the road to recovery.
In your ankle there are a collection of minor and major ligaments. The reason there are so many is that your foot is required to make a wide range of movements and constantly stabilise your body on many different surfaces.
Ankle ligaments can be divided into four main sections
- The deltoid ligament: This ligament sits on the inside of your ankle, and joins the tibia (shin bone) to several major bones in the ankle.
- The ATFL which sits at the front of the ankle on the outside and joins the bones there to the tibia.
- The PTFL which sits at the back of the ankle on the outside and connects the bones there to the tibia. This mirrors the connection of the ATFL.
- The CFL, which joins the very back base of the ankle to the upper areas of the ankle joint.
Injuries to ankle ligaments
Almost all ankle injuries involve at least one of the above ligaments, usually resulting in a strain or tear, and in severe cases a full rupture.
This is most often caused by a traumatic injury, such as a hard fall, rolling the ankle, stepping into a pothole, or having a high force pressed against the side of the ankle.
Regardless of who you are and how severe the injury, there are some core methods that help to manage and treat damage to the ligaments and allow for recovery that can be followed.
Ankle ligaments and the road to recovery
If you’ve sustained an injury to your ankle that’s caused pain, swelling and instability that’s lasting more than a couple of days, it’s important to see a doctor and get checked to confirm exactly where the damage is.
All ligaments heal in roughly the same way, and in most cases don’t require surgery.
Below is a list of some simple and effective ways to manage ligament problems and ensure you’re back on your feet in no time!
The road to recovery
While this might seem like a no-brainer, it’s important to know what type of rest is required. Taking pressure off the ligament is crucial in the early days of recovery, and with the ankle this is especially important due to the weight bearing nature of the joint.
Bracing and supports are one of the most effective ways of recovering effectively from ligament issues.
The ligaments in your ankle are responsible for moving and guiding the joint, so any movement will strain an injured ligament. By wearing the right brace, you can unload the joint and take all pressure off the ligament so it can focus on healing without interruption from movement.
Not sure which brace is right for your injury? Try our blog: Selecting the right ankle brace for your injury.
Featured above: MalleoLoc L which is ideal for lateral instability, low grade ligament ruptures and mild drop-foot.
Physiotherapy is a crucial part of any physical injury recovery. By seeing a physio, practicing stretches and strengthening exercises, you can regain full use of the ankle, and protect it against further re-injury.
Following the exercises set out by your therapist can make the difference between a full recovery and chronic pain, so stick to it
Once the ankle is recovered, we can forget about the problem and go straight back to the activity that damaged it in the first place.
However, it is important to make sure you’re keeping the ankle protected during sports and exercise. Some good ways to do this include:
- Wearing a support to stabilise and strengthen the muscles.
- Stretching and warming up the joint before and after.
- Wearing high-top shoes or boots that provide extra stability to the ankle.
- Avoid activity where possible that has unstable ground or the risk of sliding and rolling.
For assistance selecting the right product for your needs, book a video consultation with a Bauerfeind expert: Book Video Call, or call us on 1300 668 466.
Do you have private health? Most private health extras will cover Bauerfeind Products, check to see if yours is included. Bauerfeind Private Health Insurance Enquiry.
Bauerfeind products are developed at our innovation and manufacturing facility in Zeulenroda, Germany. Based on years of scientific research, our award-winning braces and support garments are highly recommended by medical professionals and athletes worldwide.