As The Ankle Turns What To Do If You Sprain Your Ankle

The warmer spring and summer months provide great incentive to get outside and get active after a long winter. Activities such as running, tennis, basketball and inline skating are favorites among weekend athletes hoping to get back into shape. Outdoor activities are also a great way to get together with friends and family on a warm day.

The downside to increased physical activity is a higher risk of injuries, especially after an inactive winter. Ankle sprains are one of the most common injuries. Approximately 25,000 Americans are sidelined by an ankle sprain on any given day. If you’re one of the unlucky ones, a quick trip to urgent care may be all you need.

What is an ankle sprain?

A sprain is defined as an injury that stretches or tears the ligaments that hold your ankle in place.

When should I head to an urgent care facility?

You should seek medical care right away if you have any of the following symptoms: numbness in the injured ankle, extensive swelling or bruising, or you’re not able to stand or bear weight on the affected ankle.

If you worry about driving a long distance to the nearest urgent care center, you’re in luck: chances are there is an urgent care center located close to your home or workplace. Once you arrive, the urgent care doctor will examine your injured ankle and ask you a series of questions. In some cases, he or she may order an x-ray to rule out a fracture. If your injured ankle is fractured, you may be in luck as 4 out of 5 urgent care facilities can treat fractures.

Treating a sprained ankle

Once your exam is finished, your doctor will devise a treatment plan that will get you back in action quickly. Treatments such as a splint or brace, over the counter anti-inflammatories (Ibuprofen, Advil) and RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation) may be all you need. In some instances, you may need to follow up with your own doctor within a few days. If your ankle is badly fractured, you may need a referral to an orthopedic specialist or surgeon for evaluation.

While a sprained ankle isn’t what you bargained for when you dusted off your running shoes or inline skates, you can get it treated quickly at your local urgent care clinic. You’ll save yourself the time and expense of an emergency department visit, and you’ll be on your way quickly. Even better, you won’t need to wait days to be seen, as the majority of urgent care centers are open seven days a week. With a thorough exam and treatment plan, you’ll be back outdoors and enjoying those warm spring and summer months.

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