Sprains & Strains

Sprain and Strain Treatment

When you play sports, exercise or work in an active job, you can sustain a strain or sprain in your wrists, hands, ankles or feet. Strains and sprains can affect your body’s musculoskeletal system, causing injury to bones, muscles, ligaments or tendons. While minor sprains and strains often heal on their own without complications, more severe injuries can limit your range of motion and require more advanced treatment.

Whenever you need strain or sprain treatment near Arlington, Virginia, Ortho OIC is here for you. Our expert specialists will provide you with care to help you heal properly.

Learn about sprains and strains and how receiving treatment at an urgent orthopedic care center can begin your road to recovery.

Read More

The Difference Between Strains and Sprains

Sprains and strains are common orthopedic injuries. While they’re similar, a strain is an injury to tendons or muscles while a sprain is an injury to ligaments. Strains and sprains can happen in many body parts, such as the arms, back, neck, ankles, knees and feet.

A strain can occur when a muscle or tendon is torn or overstretched. It often happens because of overexertion or improper use of the muscle or tendon. Sprains happen when you overextend or tear a ligament because one of your joints experiences trauma.

While anyone can sustain a sprain or strain, athletes, people who are overweight and those who have had sprains or strains before are the most vulnerable. People who work in fast-paced environments also may be susceptible to enduring strains and sprains if they are on their feet and moving heavy objects a lot.

You can determine if you have a strain or sprain by the signs and symptoms of the injury. Common signs and symptoms of a strain or sprain include:

  • Pain or tenderness.
  • Bruising.
  • Swelling.
  • Limited range of motion.
  • Muscle cramping or spasms.

Most strains and sprains can heal entirely with adequate treatment. Once you endure one strain or sprain, you may be at a higher risk of re-injuring the body part again. Knowing your risk factor can help you take preventative measures to avoid spraining or straining the same body area.

Read More

How Do You Treat Sprains and Strains?

The treatment approach is similar for both strain and sprain injuries. When you suffer an injury, reducing swelling and pain within the first 24 or 48 hours is vital. To help minimize swelling before arriving at a treatment facility, you can use a straightforward method like RICE — rest, ice, compression and elevation:

  • Rest: One of the most critical steps to healing an injury is resting. Let your injured body part rest by avoiding or limiting your use of it.
  • Ice: Putting ice on your strain or sprain can help reduce swelling within 48 hours after the incident. Create a cold or ice pack using a thin towel and apply it to your injury in 10-minute intervals with breaks in between. You want to avoid exacerbating the injury or damaging your skin, so taking breaks from applying ice is crucial.
  • Compression: You can further reduce and control swelling with compression bandages around the injured site. When you wrap your injury, ensure the dressing isn’t too tight so your blood can continue circulating like normal.
  • Elevate: Keeping your injury elevated can drain fluid and reduce swelling. Elevation can also expedite the healing process while promoting pain relief. You should keep your injured site elevated as much as possible during the first few days after the incident.

In addition to the RICE method, you could also use over-the-counter pain relievers to help you be pain-free while healing. To ensure your injury is stabilized while healing, your doctor may immobilize the area with a splint, cast or another device so the tendons, ligaments and muscles heal straight. Depending on the severity of your strain or sprain, you may also need to regularly massage the area or attend physical therapy to help you regain or maintain motion.

While recovering, it’s essential to avoid engaging in activities that cause you further pain, swelling or discomfort. The RICE procedure, combined with other pain relief tactics, will ensure your injury properly heals while you remain comfortable.

Read More

Can Urgent Care Treat Sprains?

We can help!

General and orthopedic urgent care centers can treat strains and sprains. They are some of the most common injuries treated at urgent care facilities.

Ortho OIC is an urgent care facility with a specialization in orthopedics. We can treat all musculoskeletal system injuries sustained from physical activities, including sprains and strains. Whether you have a wrist or ankle injury, we provide individualized treatment for sprains. Our strained wrist treatment will ensure your muscles or tendons thoroughly heal so you can use your wrist to play sports or engage in other activities again. You’ll feel better with our strained ankle treatment because we offer solutions to help you recover efficiently and effectively.

Visiting an urgent orthopedic care center ensures you receive immediate sprain and strain care. At Ortho OIC, we have extended hours so patients can come to us at their convenience, whether during the day or in the evening after work. Urgent care centers often have minimal wait times, so you can have a medical professional assess and diagnose your situation within a 30-minute to 60-minute wait. You’ll receive quality service for any strains or sprains you sustain.

Ortho OIC 30 Min Scaled

How Long Do Strains and Sprains Take to Heal?

Sprains and strains can take several weeks or months to heal, depending on the level and severity of the injury. Minor strains and sprains typically heal after four to six weeks, while more severe cases could take several months. The time for proper healing also varies based on how often you reinjure the specific site.

Your strain or sprain will heal well as long as you follow the measures your doctor prescribes for recovering. You’ll be moving and participating in activities again in no time.

How Can You Prevent Future Strains or Sprains?

You can take proactive measures to prevent sustaining strains and sprains by conditioning your muscles, tendons and ligaments through stretching before exercising or playing sports, wearing proper footwear for activities and maintaining a healthy weight.

Working on your flexibility and strength in joints, like your ankles, wrists and back, can also help ensure you’re less prone to straining or spraining different body parts. You can do heel raises and circle your feet to expand your motion and regularly stretch and strengthen your ankles. Yoga is another great activity to stretch your whole body and improve your balance, getting your muscles warm and ready for any other activities you may participate in throughout the day.

You can also ensure your muscles stay strong by fueling your body with a well-balanced diet. Eating enough vitamins, calcium, minerals and more helps support your bones and muscles. Broadening your plate to include different kinds of vegetables, protein, dairy and other products will help you enjoy the food you eat while assisting your health’s overall wellness.

Additionally, wearing a brace while playing sports, exercising or walking can help reduce the risk of sprains or strains in your ankles, back or wrists.

Read More

Visit Ortho OIC for Strain and Sprain Treatment in Arlington, VA

Ortho OIC can help you or someone you know recover from a sprain or strain injury. Our compassionate and kind staff have experience and expertise in providing treatment for tendon, ligament, bone and muscle injuries. We’ll help you recover from any sprains or strains you sustain while active.

As an urgent care center, we offer hours to help you receive care at your convenience. Ortho OIC is open on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. We’ll ensure you get the treatment you need without interrupting your busy work schedule.

Speak to one of our specialists to learn more about our orthopedic treatments by calling our office. If you’re ready to receive care, you can schedule an appointment with us. Ortho OIC serves patients from Bethesda, Maryland, Washington, D.C., and several regions in Virginia like Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria and Falls Church.

Read More
Masthead Inner Background