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Ankle Pain

Ankle Pain Relief

Ankle Pain & Ankle Pain Relief

Ever dealt with ankle pain?
Ankle pain is a very common symptom that results from injuries to the ankle joint. According to reports, more than 2 million Americans experience ankle pain every year.

The ankle joint connects the bones of your leg to the foot. Within this articulation, there are several bones, tendons, and ligaments. This complexity offers a great range of motion. However, it also comes with a few downsides, including a predisposition to injury. Luckily, most cases of ankle pain originate from benign injuries that heal without the need for surgery.

On this page, we will cover the most common causes of ankle pain and some useful treatments to address them. We will also briefly touch on the potential benefits of seeking the help of a Sports Chiropractor to treat ankle pain.

Symptoms of Ankle Pain

The symptoms of ankle pain often stem from an inflammatory process that affects the joint. Besides the pain and soreness, you may experience the following signs and symptoms:

  • Swelling of the foot
  • Tenderness to the touch
  • Changes in skin coloration
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Difficulty walking on the injured foot

Risk Factors Of Ankle Injuries

These are the risk factors that increase your chances of getting ankle injuries; they are divided into two big categories – Intrinsic and extrinsic factors.

Intrinsic risk factors

  • Low body weight
  • Decreased physical activity
  • Height – Tall people have a higher risk
  • Gender – Females have a higher risk

Extrinsic risk factors

These are the factors related to the type of sports patients perform. They include the following sports:

  • Soccer
  • Basketball
  • Indoor volleyball
  • Football
  • Hockey

The level of participation in these sports is the determining factor of the risk associated. On a side note, wearing high heels is also a risk factor for ankle injuries.

The Causes Of Ankle Pain

Achilles Tendonitis

The Achilles tendon is susceptible to inflammation because of wear and tear. Experts refer to this condition as Achilles tendonitis. People often injure their Achilles tendons after landing from a jump. They typically report hearing a popping sound.

After conducting a comprehensive physical exam, your healthcare provider may confirm the diagnosis right away. In some cases, more tests are required, including an MRI.

Ankle Sprains

The number of ligaments within the ankle joint makes them prone to injury. These ligaments might get stretched or torn. The most injured ligament is the ATFL- Anterior Talofibular Ligament- which connects Talus bone to the Fibula bone. This ligament resists your ankle from rolling inwards, also known as Inversion Sprain.

Ankle Fractures

This is the most serious injury to the ankle joint. After a severe injury, you will experience intense pain, swelling, blistering, and joint deformity.

The treatment of ankle fractures requires professional healthcare. Some cases even require surgery to realign the fractured bones. If you believe you broke or fractured something in your ankle, please dial 911 or go to the hospital.

The Treatment Of Ankle Pain


For decades, healthcare providers told patients to use the RICE plan, which is an acronym for:

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression
  • Elevation

Newer research says it’s not as effective as PEACE & LOVE!

P: Protect (unload/restrict movement 1-3 days), minimize risk of aggravating injury
E: Elevate (rest the limb higher then the heart to increase your fluid flow out of the area)
A: Avoid (anti-inflammatories- inflammation is good*** as it means there is a healing process)
C: Compress (prevents edema, promotes decrease in swelling and increase in quality of life)
E: Educate (educating patients on the condition and recovery will prevent over treatment)


L: Load (optimal loading will help repair, remodel,  and increase tissue extensibility)
O: Optimism (get over psychological barriers such as fear, avoidance, and catasrophization)
V: Vascularization (pain free aerobic exercises should be given at the start of the treatment plan to increase blood flow to the area and help keep ranges of motion)
E: Exercise (if there is no pain, the doctor may give you some exercises to increase mobility, strength, and proprioceptive exercises)

Functional Support

This modality of treatment uses external supports, such as an ankle brace or tape, to stabilize the joint without blocking its movement.

These wearables support the joint for 4-6 weeks and can significantly improve your outcome compared to joint immobilization. Please speak to the doctor about wearing a specific support as there are many varieties catered to specific injuries.


Exercise is very helpful in the management of ankle pain. It also prevents future injuries.

The exact exercises that you should perform to optimize joint healing and functionality vary depending on your injury. Moreover, the combination of exercise with manual mobilization yields short and long-term benefits.

How A Chiropractor Helps With Ankle Pain

Getting treated at Spine & Sport Center in Brooklyn, NY, by Dr. Brian Mikhayloff you can expect one or more of the following techniques:

  • Manual massage therapy
  • Laser Therapy
  • Ultrasound
  • Muscle stimulation
  • Shockwave Therapy
  • Personalized exercises to address your condition
  • Kinesiology Taping
  • Dynamic Taping
  • Home Exercise Plans

Combining these techniques with the RICE approach can significantly improve your symptoms. Once your ankle joint becomes more stable, the Chiropractor may introduce ankle and foot adjustments.

The positive side of choosing chiropractic care over conventional treatments is the lack of side effects. Besides of this major benefit, a chiropractor has a lot to offer to patients with ankle pain.

Strengthening the ankle joint and giving it more flexibility and mobility can often accelerate recovery. Moreover, your chiropractor will focus on improving blood flow to the area of injury, which may help the tissues heal properly.

Finally, you will get some valuable lifestyle tips to cope with the injury and recover as fast as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1.      What are the types of ankle pain?

Ankle pain can be acute or chronic. The first usually results from a single event that disrupts the integrity of your ligaments, tendons, or bones. Chronic ankle pain, on the other hand, stems from years of tear and wear.

Despite the intensity of acute ankle pain, its treatment is usually more effective than chronic ankle pain. If you have chronic ankle pain, consider chiropractic care.

2.      How do we diagnose ankle pain?

Your chiropractor will take your medical history to learn about any recent injuries to the ankle. After that, he/she will conduct a physical examination to inspect the integrity of different structures. The collection of this information will allow your chiropractor to diagnose ankle pain.

3.      What is the outcome of ankle pain?

The outcome of ankle pain is generally favorable. However, some severe cases may require surgery and months of physical rehabilitation before you restore your full functionality.

Speak with your chiropractor about your specific condition and how he they can help.

Takeaway message

Ankle pain is a very common chief complaint that affects millions of people around the world. The ankle joint is susceptible to injury due to its complex structures and its indispensable role in daily movement.

We hope that this page managed to highlight the most common causes and symptoms of ankle pain, as well as how we can treat this condition.

If you have any questions, feel free to call/text us, or use the contact us page