We all remember ankle sprain injury as a painful and a generally nasty one. What’s more, this nuisance renders us incapable to even so much as walk during the first couple of days, let alone be capable of running, something children do all the time when outside (or inside, for that matter). Seeing a bed-tied kid staring at the ceiling in boredom isn’t really a sight for any parents’ sore eyes. Be that as it may, every parent should know about this common type of injury.
Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only. Please seek medical attention if your child has a sprained ankle.
Ankle sprain injury is usually caused by landing on one’s feet in an awkward ankle position. Usually, the foot is twisted inwards and one or more ligaments that attach to the ankle bones is partially, or in severe cases completely torn. More severe sprains generally result in ankle instability, a lot of pain and bone tenderness. If this is the case, you should definitely take your child to the doctor’s office. If there is little pain and no soreness on the bone, however, you can take care of your kid at home by following a couple of easy and logical steps:
- Ice – First thing you’ll need to do is to apply ice for 30 minutes every 4 hours for 3 days in order to reduce the swelling
- Elevation – Your child’s leg should rest above the level of the heart in order to avoid (or reduce) swelling.
- Rest – No walking for the first 24 hours
It is generally advisable to keep away from farmaceuticals as much as possible. However, if your kid is in a lot of pain, some Ibuprofen might do less damage in general than the emotional trauma that pain can bring upon. After a while, every injury treatment can be sped up by performing easy exercises. If the injury isn’t severe, your child should start moving the affected ankle through its natural range of motion, after 48 hours. These movements include bending the ankle forwards, backwards, outwards and inwards. At this point, you should also start encouraging your kid to start standing on the injured foot in order to restore balance and speed up the healing process. Fret not if your child continues complaining about the pain after the first week, these injuries take more than 2 weeks to improve and up to 12 weeks in order to completely heal.
Return to Play
Your child will be eager to start playing and having fun again within the first couple of hours after injury, let alone after 2 weeks of limping. It is of huge importance that you keep an eye on the little one during this period. If you cannot stop him or her from running and jumping when you’re not looking, an ankle brace might be an ideal solution for your mischievous kid. In order to promote healing and ankle strength have them perform some running drills so as to make sure the ankle is okay. Return of swelling or pain is a definitive sign that your child should stop playing and start resting again. Additionally, if the injury starts manifesting itself again, make your kid go through the steps immediately following the injury all over again. This means ice for the swelling, elevation and rest.
Ultimately, anyone who has a kid knows how difficult it is to keep them at bay and resting. Therefore, it is crucial that you keep an eye on your child during this period, in order to avoid complications and even lasting injury effects. Keep in mind that you should always pay a visit to the doctor if there’s a lot of pain involved and ankle injury is no exception here.
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