Whether you have a small ankle sprain from stepping in a pothole or a severe twist where you can’t stand up, your injury needs prompt treatment so that you can avoid chronic pain in the future. The first step of at-home care for a sprained ankle is the RICE method, which stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Immediately after your injury, rest the ankle. If you need to get up, use crutches. Don’t place weight on the ankle until you know the extent of your injuries. If you try to walk it off, you risk re-injury, instability, and arthritis.
Before you ice, wrap your ankle in a compression bandage. This is going to immobilize the injured area and act as a barrier between the ice pack and your skin.
Elevate your foot—above the heart is best—and ice the area for 10 to 20 minutes to reduce pain and swelling. Take it off for 10 minutes and repeat.
As soon as you can, we recommend that you call Richardson Podiatry Associates here in Texas at (972) 690-5374 for a diagnosis. We can take an X-ray of your ankle and determine the next steps for therapy and treatment.