With the season opener coming up fast, the NY Giants have two players struggling with ankle issues. Both star wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. and cornerback Eli Apple are sidelined due to ankle injuries. Part of the reason that professional athletes struggle with chronic ankle problems is because they can’t always afford to take the full amount of time necessary for complete healing. At Long Island Foot & Ankle Group, PC we see many patients (who are not professional football players) who have chronic ankle pain and instability because old ankle injuries have not been properly rehabilitated. When an ankle is sprained, the ligaments are overstretched or possibly even torn. After a certain period of time the pain goes away and most patients then think they can resume their regular activities. However, retraining the tissue takes time. In addition, it’s necessary to strengthen the muscles that surround the ligaments to provide additional support and prevent repeated ankle sprains.
Symptoms of Ongoing Ankle Problems
If you have suffered more than one ankle sprain you may be at risk for chronic ankle problems. Other signs include:
- Pain and/or tenderness in the ankle
- A feeling that your ankles are wobbly or are going to give out
- Persistent swelling of the ankle
- Repeatedly twisting the ankle when walking on uneven surfaces, playing sports or even when standing still
How to Improve Ankle Function
If you have any of the above symptoms or have a previous sprain that you suspect is not fully healed, one of our foot and ankle surgeons, Dr. Russell Caprioli, Dr. Mary Ann Bilotti, Dr. John Haight and Dr. Marzana Mleczko should examine your ankle. The podiatrist will check the condition of your ankle and the range of motion. X-rays or other imaging studies may be ordered to get a more complete picture of the condition of your ankle.
Once the foot doctor has determined the extent of your ankle problem there are a number of non-surgical treatment options available, including: medications to reduce pain and swelling and bracing and physical therapy to help repair ankle damage and prevent future sprains.