An injured foot or ankle can be as frustrating as it is painful. If you or a loved one suffers from foot and ankle pain, check out the available treatments from Ortho OIC.
Common Foot and Ankle Injuries
The ankle has the smallest surface area of the body’s major weight-bearing joints — knees, hips and ankles — and holds the most weight, especially during walking or running. For this reason, ankles and feet are prone to sprains and fractures. Continue reading to learn more about common acute and chronic foot and ankle injuries.
An acute injury is a specific event causing severe but temporary pain. For feet and ankles, this could involve:
- Strains and sprains: Occur when the ankle rolls, twists or turns unnaturally. The ligaments can be stretched or torn, causing immediate pain.
- Fracture: A crack or severe bruising in the bone. These are usually caused by overuse, repetitive activity or trauma.
- Achilles rupture: A pop in the ankle followed by bruising and swelling, usually occurring with a strain. These injuries can result from any event when your heel is pushing into the ground but the calf is contracting, like landing back on the ground after a jump or pushing something extremely heavy.
- Dislocation: An abnormal separation of the ankle joint bones. Severe pain can occur right away, along with swelling and deformation of the ankle.
- Neuropathic ulcers: Open wounds forming on the bottom of the foot. These injuries are most commonly associated with diabetes.
If acute injuries are left untreated, they could lead to several long-term foot and ankle conditions. These chronic injuries can include:
- Tendonitis: Pain in the Achilles tendon that occasionally flares up during certain activities. Consistent pain could result in an impending rupture.
- Arthritis: The wearing down of cartilage on the ankle joint until the bone is rubbing on bone. The three main arthritis types include post-traumatic, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis.
- Foot deformities: High arches, flat feet and bunions that cause foot pain, ranging from mild to severe.
- Plantar fasciitis: The inflammation of the plantar fascia — the thick band of tissue connecting the heel bone to the toes.
Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Treatment
To prevent foot and ankle injuries from happening in the first place, try these tips:
- Strengthen and stretch your ankles through exercise.
- Use an ankle brace when engaging in strenuous activity.
- Choose supportive footwear, especially when exercising or walking long distances.
- Watch your step when walking on potentially hazardous surfaces, like unbalanced sidewalks.
Some ankle injuries respond well to conservative treatments such as pain medications, ankle braces and shoe inserts. However, in more serious cases like arthritis or dislocation, the ankle can take longer to heal and may require surgery. Physical therapy is a beneficial treatment to help you regain a full range of motion in your ankle and foot following a procedure.
Book an Appointment With Ortho OIC Today
Don’t let foot and ankle pain prevent you from living your life. Contact Ortho OIC to book an appointment today for sprained and fractured ankle treatment and fractured foot treatment.