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Treating Ankle Sprains
Treatment will depend on how bad your sprain is. For a severe sprain, healing may take 3 months or more.
Right After Your Injury: Use R.I.C.E.
Rest: At first, keep weight off the ankle as much as you can. You may be given crutches to help you walk without putting weight on the ankle.
Ice: Put an ice pack on the ankle for 15 minutes. Remove the pack and wait at least 30 minutes. Repeat for up to 3 days. This helps reduce swelling.
Compression: To reduce swelling and keep the joint stable, you may need to wrap the ankle with an elastic bandage. For more severe sprains, you may need an ankle brace or a cast.
Elevation: To reduce swelling, keep your ankle raised above your heart when you sit or lie down.
Your doctor may suggest an oral anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen. This relieves the pain and helps reduce any swelling. Be sure to take your medication as directed.
After 3 days, soak your ankle in warm water for 30 seconds, then in cool water for 30 seconds. Go back and forth for 5 minutes. Doing this every 2 hours will help keep the swelling down.