Ankle Injuries-Help in a Flash

24 Feb

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Photo credit Jacob Moore (elementmotif.com and oilfieldimaging.com)

 

Another weekend down, another injury free weekend at 4 yo t-ball so that I haven’t felt compelled to out myself as a pediatrician to my son’s team.

Ankle sprains are one of the most common sports injuries in older children/teens.  All sports (except running) have some side-to-side movement that any “graceful” athlete can tip over and hurt themselves.  Even if your child avoids tripping over themselves, they can step on bases and other children’s feet.

What do you do with a sprained ankle?

  • Rest-No need to completely restrict movement.  Should be allowed to do what they can (walk, run then sport when pain improving).
  • Ice-Apply 20 minutes twice a day.
  • Motrin-To help with pain and inflammation.

Who needs a doctor’s visit?

  • Pain is severe
  • Pain in lower leg bones or bumps at the side of the ankle
  • Unable to put any weight on the foot

Who needs a brace?

Only those that have had repeat ankle sprains.  Bracing after the first sprain is unnecessary and potentially harmful. 

I would only recommend bracing in conjunction with your doctor.  Too many kids are wearing braces around indefinitely with no plan.

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2 Responses to “Ankle Injuries-Help in a Flash”

  1. Tracy February 24, 2014 at 4:24 pm #

    How about 1 year olds – same rules apply? We think Drew has a sprained ankle. He doesn’t want to walk. Dad thinks time will heal all wounds.

    • jrsmith120880 February 24, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

      Great question! Probably anyone under 2 who refuses to bear weight should be evaluated or at least get an evaluation or least be seen by a doctor at the house ;).

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