Ankle Pain Treatment
“First of all I would like to tell you that your ankle is probably the second most injured extremity in your body. The first joint is the knee. Whether it’s tripping over a rock, landing wrong after a jump, or going down steps, it’s really easy to turn an ankle. An injury as simple as landing on a step wrong can be severe, problematic and become chronic. My job here is to tell you that we can fix it and help you have less trouble in the future.” – Dr. Nilles
Causes of Ankle Pain
There can be multiple causes for ankle pain. Some conditions that result in ankle pain include a sprained ankle, osteoarthritis, gout, sciatica, and low back pain.
Let’s start with common ankle sprain. Most people experience sprained ankles from playing sports, walking on uneven ground, and wearing high heels. Sprains usually take 4-8 weeks to heal. Immediately after an ankle sprain, your muscles and ligaments swell and are inflamed. These muscles fill with non-elastic scar tissue. Scar tissue takes 2-6 weeks to replace. During this time, scar tissue is not very strong. So the likelihood of rolling the ankle over time increases. It can even lead to more sprains. If you sprained your ankle, the most common complaint is pain while walking, standing and jumping.
Aside from sprains, ankle pain can occur due to arthritis. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type associated with ankle pain. This occurs when there is wear and tear in the joint. Cartilage in this joint can break down as well, leading to stiffness and more pain.
Osteoarthritis has a cousin called rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Rheumatoid arthritis occurs as the immune system attacks thin membranes in the joints. In other words, your body attacks itself. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic and inflammatory condition that affects a a small percentage of people.
Along with the ankles, osteoarthritis can affect your hands, wrists, elbows, and feet.
Gout develops from built-up uric acid in the body. In addition to sharp pain in the joints, symptoms of gout include redness and inflammation. Common sites for gout are ankles, big toes, wrists and fingers. Gout is usually detected on x-ray or blood studies.
Sciatica / Low Back Pain
Ankle pain can also caused by or even cause sciatica or low back pain. The sciatic nerve is located in the lower back region. It runs down the back of your buttock and into your thigh. Why, you ask, would sciatica cause ankle pain. It’s because you’re not walking properly. Sciatica greatly affects how you walk. It then makes other joints hurt, like your ankle.
The same is said for low back pain. You start walking wrong or awkward because your back is sore. You bend, lift and sleep wrong. All of your movements change. These changes create pain and stress in joints, namely in the knee and ankle.
How Natural Movement of Your Foot Is Affected
Natural movement of your foot as you run or walk is called pronation. Pronation occurs as you shift your body weight from the heel to the ball of the foot. It applies to when you’re standing, as well. Especially when you shift your weight from side to side.
The opposite of pronation is supination. Supination develops as your body weight is carried from the toes of one foot to those of the other. It makes your body move in a forward direction. This happens when you run or walk fast.
When this movement is affected by ankle pain, chiropractors realize there is weakness in the muscles. This weakness can be from overpronation (the foot rolls to the inside edge) or oversupination (the foot rolls to the outside edge).
Overpronation leads to flattening of the arches in the foot. As the arches flatten, the muscles underneath overstretch. With oversupination, the muscles and tendons in the ankle are strained, causing it to roll. If the ankle rolls, patients suffer from injuries such as a sprain or a torn tendon.
In both cases, the ankles and feet aren’t the only areas affected. Pain can also develop in the knees, hip, and back. Typical injuries and conditions to watch for include:
Any foot pain can cause stress on the spine and the body. Since your feet support your body, having a weakened foundation can mean big trouble.
Treatment for Ankle Pain
At Diamond Chiropractic, our chiropractic team will examine, take x-rays, and evaluate your posture to determine the cause of your ankle pain. After comparing his findings, our chiropractor will develop a treatment plan to help alleviate your symptoms, heal the ankle pain, and provide you with recommendations to lower your risk for possible re-occurrences.
Dr. Nilles will realign the vertebrae in the affected area to increase your range of motion and alleviate the pain on the muscles and joints of the ankle. Symptoms resulting from the pain, from other nerves in the affected area, will begin to decrease as well.
Electro-therapy, or acupuncture, is effective with ankle pain and its symptoms. Patients will notice, after several treatments, muscle spasms they experience begin to decrease. Any intense pain patients had prior will start disappearing as well. They will see more mobility come back to their spine and other affected areas of the body.
With any injury, whether to the back, neck, or extremity, the last thing you want to do is make the pain worse. The same idea applies to healing ankle pain. Our advice is designed to help you perform everyday tasks and responsibilities safely. We focus on healing and relief of the ankle pain, not aggravating it further. Proper foot wear will be addressed by Dr. Nilles.
Contact Our Omaha Chiropractor for Ankle Pain
If you have any ankle pain, and you want professional advice and treatment, then Diamond Chiropractic is your answer. Schedule an appointment with Diamond Chiropractic of Omaha, NE, today! Let us help you get relief from your ankle pain, and feeling better, right away.