The countdown is still going for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, which begins on June 12. This international tournament will bring 31 countries together to play 64 highly intense matches, with Spain being the defending champions. Soccer can be a risky sport, and ankle injuries are common. Midfielder for the Chile team, Matias Fernández, is out due to an ankle injury. Whether you are a professional athlete or weekend warrior, sprain recovery takes time and the right course of treatment.

Many of us have experienced some degree of an ankle sprain at one point or another. A quick twist or roll of the ankle can happen at a moment’s notice and leave you in pain. The ankle is forced beyond its normal range of motion, and the ligaments that support the joint are stretched beyond their limits. There are several degrees of ankle sprains, but one thing is true for all of them: quick and appropriate treatment sets you up for success. If you are active, treating a sprain right will prevent future complications, pain and chronic ankle instability.

For grade one sprains, the go-to treatment will be the RICE method. Start immediately with rest and icing to prevent further damage and limit pain and swelling. Apply ice 3-4 times a day for 15-20 minutes each time. Use an elastic bandage to reduce swelling, and elevate your ankle whenever possible. This may be necessary for several days. For a grade two sprain or worse, this is just the first phase. Casting or splinting may be needed, followed by a rehabilitation program with range of motion, stretching and flexibility exercises. Ease back into your activities slowly, wear proper footwear, avoid hard surfaces, and pay attention to unusual pain and discomfort.

If you have suffered an ankle sprain, get it treated right from the start by calling Mark Gasparini, D.P.M. in Massapequa, NY. Call our office at (516) 804-9038 or request an appointment online. Your love for sports does not need to be hindered by a foot problem—contact us for expert treatment that will keep you in the game!

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