A twist or sprain is where the ligament of a joint (the strong, fibrous tissue that connects bones to joints) is stretched too far, causing some of its fibres to tear. Twists and sprains are very common and can happen in the normal course of everyday life as well as when enjoying sporting activities.
What to do if you have twisted or sprained a joint
You will know immediately if you have twisted or sprained a joint as the affected area will be extremely painful and visibly swollen. There may be a very obvious purple bruise, and movement will be restricted. If you think you may have fractured a bone rather than simply sprained a joint (if your injury involved impact), it’s always a good idea to proceed to A&E to have the injury checked out.
Twists and sprains normally resolve themselves over time, but in order to help your body to heal faster, it’s best to rest and try not to move the affected joint until you can move it without pain. Ice can help to reduce pain and swelling, but be careful not to leave it on for too long as it can cause frostbite, which will only make the injury more painful. Over the counter painkillers will usually be sufficient for a sprain.
If your pain hasn’t resolved after a few days, you may need physical therapy in order to help restore movement to the affected area. Some gentle exercises should restore the strength and stability of the joint. If your joint is still unstable or painful even after gentle stretching and exercise, you may require surgery. A doctor will examine your injury and decide how best to proceed.
Claiming for personal injury compensation for twists and sprains
If you have received a very serious twist or sprain injury that wasn’t your fault, you may be entitled to make a claim for personal injury compensation.
To find out more, call our expert advisers at Accident Advice Helpline on 0800 689 0500. They’ll be able to point out who is most likely responsible for your injury, and assess the validity of your claim. Although there is no obligation to proceed with a claim simply by making a call, if you choose to it will most likely be done entirely over the telephone and on a no win, no fee basis. The helpline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For an even quicker guide to your eligibility, check our 30-second claim test online.