You have probably heard of the RICE method for treating a soft tissue injury. It is a really useful formula to remember should you suffer from a sprain or strain.
Here’s how it works:
Stop your activity. Running around on a sprained ankle is likely to make the injury worse and increase your recovery time.
Applying an ice pack to the affected area can reduce swelling and inflammation, and help with pain. Make sure you wrap the ice in a cloth to avoid burning the skin, and as a rule of thumb apply ice for 20mins at a time.
Wrap the affected area in a compression bandage as this helps to reduce swelling, and supports the stability of the joint while it heals.
Take it easy and put your feet up (literally). Elevating an injured limb helps to get blood flow to the area which in turns promotes healing. Limit walking around on an injury, and take rests where you can.
How long until I’m better?
Depending on the severity of your injury, a sprain or strain can take between 1 and 6 weeks to heal properly.
The key thing to remember with any injury is to allow yourself time to heal. Rushing back into sport too soon can prolong your healing time and make things a lot worse.
For advice on getting strength and mobility back to a sprained joint, come and see us and we’ll put together a rehab plan to get you back on your feet as quickly as possible.