Sprained ankle can be healed quite effectively when the injured area is moved as soon as possible, which restore all functions of the soft tissues associated with it. Moreover, it promotes proper flow of blood through the injured area, through movement therapy. The key is to avoid discomfort while one recovers from the ankle sprain as that is the sign of aggravation of the problem that will prolong the recovery time.
Though, R.I.C. E (Rest Ice compression Elevation) method is considered the universal way of treating a sprained ankle, but it just prevent the further damage and offers a gradual healing of sprained joint. With other available solutions, it can be healed more promptly if the ankle joint is exercised properly as early as possible.
Elevate you sprained ankle and let it rest over the pillow, while sitting on the sofa as this aids in enhancing fluid drainage. While the ankle is kept elevated, try spelling out alphabet with foot as frequently as one can.
In case, injury is severe, it will not be possible to even move the foot. So let the injury get a little better and then try moving the foot. The earliest the range of normal motions are initiated, faster will be fluid drainage, preventing build up of scar tissue.
While continuing alphabet exercise with the foot, start the contrast therapy using alternate cold and hot water wash of the sprained ankle foot. Use two buckets with one full of cold water and another full of hot water. Then put complete foot and ankle dipped in hot water for 2 minutes. Then spell the alphabet with the foot and perform as much motion with sprained ankle as possible, without undergoing much pain. Then dip the foot and ankle in cold water for next 2 minutes. Then take it out and allow the foot to rest adequately.
Then perform further cycle of hot to cold water, repeating for 4 cycles, always ending with cold water only. In case, ankle sprain is seemed to heal without any noticeable swelling, then contrast therapy can be ended with hot water. The hot water part of therapy is aimed at increasing the blood vessels size and the cold water narrow downs the vessels. With continual expansion and contraction of blood vessels, a pumping effect gets generated that clears off the fluid out from the sprained ankle. The process can be repeated for 3 to 4 times in a day.
Once the condition of ankles has improved substantially, weight can be put on the foot while being seated. Then progress with slow walking. If one can walk with some weight on foot, the condition is known to have improved to significant amount.
But avoid putting excess weight than can burden the healthy leg and in turn affect its health. Too much weight on the leg may lead to injury of knee, ankle, or /and hip joints of that particular leg.
Start walking on injured leg as soon as possible to activate the nerve fibres of the sprained ankle area that controls the sense of balance and sense of positioning the joint appropriately.
With continual walking, nerve fibres will be able to restore the strength of surrounding muscles and ligaments, promoting better circulation in the injured area.
It has been observed that individuals with poor balance have two folds higher risk of undergoing ankle injuries. Practise balancing exercises to improve body balancing and prevent repeated ankle injuries. The exercises involve simple forms like standing on one leg without support.