What should I do with a broken ankle?

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It is important to note that there are several bones in every foot with three bones in each ankle joint. A broken ankle is considered as a common injury due to the amount of stress placed on the feet when engaging in daily activities such as walking, running or exercising.

Even though the medical treatment for a broken ankle will depend on the precise location in which the break occurred and the severity of the break, there are measures that you can perform to help with the healing process and reduce the pain linked with the broken ankle. You can learn more about these measures by enrolling in a course on first aid today.

Broken ankle
The individual should allow the affected ankle to rest as much as possible.

Measures in managing a broken ankle

If you suspect that an individual sustained a broken ankle, he/she should not hesitate to have it checked by a doctor as soon as possible so that proper treatment can be started as well as prevent the condition from worsening. The following measures should be taken into consideration if a family member or friend has a broken ankle.

  • You have to initially consult a doctor if a broken ankle is suspected. Always remember that a healthcare professional can accurately determine the severity of the condition. In some circumstances, immobilization using a splint or cast as well as surgery might be required to protect the ankle and help it heal properly.
  • The individual should allow the affected ankle to rest as much as possible. He/she should avoid using the broken ankle since even walking will only cause further injury. In case the individual needs to walk during the initial stage of healing, crutches can be used to help move around without adding pressure on the injured foot.
  • You can apply an ice pack over the affected area for 20 minutes at a time. Make sure that you will cover the ice pack with a clean cloth or towel before applying on the broken ankle. After 20 minutes, remove the ice pack and wait for at least 40 minutes before applying the ice pack again.
  • With an elastic wrap, cover the affected ankle to help control the swelling. Take note that elastic wraps are specially made for broken ankles.
  • The broken ankle should be elevated slightly higher than the level of the heart when in resting position. By elevating the ankle, it can help reduce the swelling.
  • The doctor can prescribe strong pain medications. For minor injuries, the doctor will recommend over-the-counter pain medications. Always follow the dosage instructions when either over-the-counter or prescription pain medications are used.

The indications of a broken ankle usually include severe swelling, inability to walk, changes in the temperature of the affected ankle, pain close to the injured area and protrusion of the bone through the skin

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