What is it? An ankle sprain is an acute injury that is common in all types of physical activity. It is the most common ballet-related sprain/strain. The typical mechanism is â€œrolling overâ€? the outside of the ankle (lateral sprain). In dance this is usually caused by landing a jump, turning or coming off your toe en pointe.
The severity of an ankle sprain is graded 1st, 2nd or 3rd (mild, moderate, severe), depending on the extent of ligament injury
1) Muscle fatigue
2) Poor motor control and/or balance
3) Lapse in concentration
You may hear and/or feel a â€œpopâ€? in your ankle. This may be quite painful and you will have some immediate swelling in your ankle joint.
You may develop ecchymosis (discoloration) or bruising into the foot or up the lateral (outside) side of your leg.
In the following hours weightbearing might become symtomatic.
Treatment 1) Follow RICE:
R = REST the injured area. Do not attempt to continue to dance or be active. SIT DOWN!!
I = ICE the injured area 15-20 minutes every hour.
C = COMPRESS the area with an Ace bandage if available. Start at toes with the most compression and gradually reduce the pressure as you wrap up the ankle.
E = Elevate the injured area above the heart. This prevents the swelling from settling in the ankle joint.
2) If it is not possible to bear weight or walk on the injured ankle, seek medical attention. The physician may order x-rays to rule out a fracture.
3) Depending on the severity, you may need formal therapy to regain your range of motion and strength, and retrain your balance.
4) Manual therapies are also recommended to promote and re-establish proper mechanics and prevent the formation of scar tissue.
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