One thing you can be thankful for this November is not having chronic ankle instability. This condition can leave you feeling unsteady on your feet, and make you feel like you might fall over at any moment. It can be very frustrating and difficult to live with weak ankles, but understanding the causes and how to prevent them can make a world of difference.
If you sprain your ankle, your tendons and ligaments need time to adequately heal. If you don’t allow your ankle to fully heal, you may end up with chronic ankle instability. This means that your tendons and ligaments are stretched and don’t go back to their normal shape and length. The resulting weak joints can affect your balance, making walking difficult. Chances are that you will end up with another sprained ankle eventually, a vicious cycle that causes even more weakness.
In order to decrease your chances of a repeat sprain you need to let your ankle heal. Treatment usually involves wearing a brace to provide support to the ankle. This will also prevent your ankle from turning or rolling, which can often result in a sprain. You may also be required to undergo physical therapy. Exercise and stretching will help you regain balance, strengthen and retrain muscles, and increase range of motion. If you are an athlete, the physical therapy will focus on exercises that will help with your specific sport.
In some severe cases, where conservative treatment has failed, you can decide to undergo surgery. The operation usually involves repairing and reconstructing damaged ligaments by taking tendons from other parts of the body, such as the leg.
If you would like more information on what leads to this condition and what you can do about it, please call Dr. Peyman Elison and Dr. Viedra Elison at (623) 584-5556 and make an appointment with us at Fixing Feet Institute in Surprise, AZ.