Health blog

Is it OK to walk on a sprained ankle?

April 1st, 2021
Is It OK to Walk on a Sprained Ankle

If you’ve just sprained your ankle, you might be wondering if it’s OK to walk on it. The answer that most medical professionals will give you is no. At least, you shouldn’t do so right after your injury occurs.

A sprained ankle occurs when one or more of the ligaments in your ankle are overstretched or torn. This injury is a very common one. A medical study reports that more than 23,000 U.S. adults per day require treatment for an ankle sprain. One medical professional who can help you learn why it’s not OK to walk on a sprained ankle at first is a physical therapist. These specialists can also build you an effective recovery plan for your sprained ankle

Why is it not OK to walk on a sprained ankle at first?

A physical therapist is educated in the complexities of the human musculoskeletal system, which includes your ankle. This in-depth knowledge gives them a deep understanding of issues like ankle sprains. It’s also why your physical therapist may tell you it’s not OK to walk on a sprained ankle initially. A few of the reasons your specialist might do so are because: 

  1. Your ankle needs to rest — Movement is widely acknowledged as a potent recovery tool. Still, a sprained ankle requires a few days of rest to jump-start its natural recovery. The amount of time when you shouldn’t walk on a sprained ankle tends to vary. Your physical therapist can determine the extent of your injury and let you know how long you should stay off your feet.
  1. Your symptoms can make it hard to walk — Many of the symptoms of an ankle sprain make it harder to walk normally. For instance, the pain of this injury is often greater when you’re putting weight on the injured ankle. Your ankle may also be swollen and stiff, which can make it more difficult to walk. People with severe ankle sprains might not even be able to bear their own weight without crutches. 
  1. They don’t want you to increase the damage — Sprained ankle ligaments tend to cause ankle instability. This can make walking a risky activity immediately after you’ve been injured. The ankle instability can cause your ankle to roll again while you’re walking. As a result, you might increase the damage done to your ankle. In turn, this greater damage can increase your recovery time and how long you’re off your feet. 

How can physical therapists help treat your ankle sprain? 

Letting you know when it is and isn’t OK to walk on a sprained ankle is only one way physical therapists can help you. They can also help you recover from this injury. These specialists are adept at using many therapy techniques to treat ankle injuries. A few of the techniques that your physical therapist may use to treat you are: 

Rehab Access can help you learn when it’s OK to walk on your sprained ankle

Are you looking for a physical therapy team that can tell you when it’s OK to walk on your sprained ankle? Look no further than our team at Rehab Access Physical Therapy. We offer free screenings that can reveal the severity of your ankle sprain. In addition, our physical therapists excel at constructing customized recovery plans designed to: 

  • Reduce pain.
  • Improve ankle flexibility.
  • Speed up healing.
  • Decrease the risk of future ankle injuries. 

Contact our team today for more information about how we can help treat your ankle sprain or to schedule your initial appointment.