Sprained or damaged ankles are separated into three levels: mild, moderate and severe. The lowest level of damage causes minimal pain and no loss of ability to put weight on the injured foot, whilst the most severe is usually a complete tear of a ligament which means a complete loss of ability to put weight on the foot.
The healing process of damaged ankle ligaments may take more or less time depending on the severity of the damage. However, whichever level you may be suffering from, the healing process is the same for any damaged ankle.
Symptoms of a damaged ankle
The first thing anyone will notice with damaged ankle ligaments is pain. This will usually be a short sharp pain that shoots through the ankle and up the leg. This sort of damage will also be accompanied by swelling, tenderness, bruising and restricted movement. Depending on how bad the damage is, you may be able to put some weight onto the affected ankle, or in some cases none at all.
Causes of damaged ankle ligaments
Damaged ligaments occur from your foot moving awkwardly or uncomfortably. This can occur for a number of reasons and due to a number of causes. Some of the most common reasons include:
- Walking in high heels or uncomfortable shoes;
- Walking on irregular or broken surfaces;
- A trip or fall; and
- Landing awkwardly after a jump.
In many cases this may be your or no one’s fault. However, if you feel that your ankle has been damaged due to the negligence of someone else (e.g. due to a wet floor at work or broken pavements in your area), you may want to call Accident Advice Helpline on 0800 689 5659,s. Our dedicated team of advisors will be able to talk you through your accident and discuss whether you can claim compensation for your injury. There is a 30-second test™ available on our website which can let you know how much you may be able to claim.
The healing process of damaged ankle ligaments is always the same, although the amount of time may vary depending on the severity of the injury. In the first 72 hours after the injury, you should stick to the acronym PRICE:
- Protect your injury;
- Rest for up to two days and then try some gentle movement so that the ankle doesn’t freeze up;
- Ice the area immediately to bring down swelling and pain;
- Compress the area to support the healing process of damaged ligaments in ankle; and
- Elevate the injury to control the swelling.
If after 72 hours there is no improvement on the pain or injury, then a doctor’s visit is advised.