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The Difference Between Strains and Sprains

Anyone who is active in sports or running is probably familiar with foot and ankle pain, the most common of which are strains and sprains. A strain affects a muscle or tendon, which is the tissue that attaches the muscle to a bone. A sprain, however, affects a ligament, which is the band of tissue that actually holds the muscle to the bone. Strains and sprains have similar symptoms, including pain, swelling, bruising, and weakness when you move the injured body part. The main differences between them are how the injury occurs, how serious it is, and how long it may take to recover. A strain, sometimes called a pulled muscle, is more likely to occur when a person doesn’t warm up before the activity, returns to an activity after time off, or continues an activity when their muscles are tired. The muscle or tendon is stretched too far, but will probably heal in a couple of weeks. A sprain is generally the result of twisting a joint, such as an ankle, or landing wrong on the foot from a jump. The ligament is stretched or torn, and is more likely to take between four to six weeks to heal, possibly longer. If you have injured your foot or ankle during an exercise, it is wise to see a podiatrist as soon as possible for a proper diagnosis and options for treatment.

Sports related foot and ankle injuries require proper treatment before players can go back to their regular routines. For more information, contact Gabe Rodriguez, DPM of Sioux Falls Foot Specialist. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Sports Related Foot and Ankle Injuries

Foot and ankle injuries are a common occurrence when it comes to athletes of any sport. While many athletes dismiss the initial aches and pains, the truth is that ignoring potential foot and ankle injuries can lead to serious problems. As athletes continue to place pressure and strain the area further, a mild injury can turn into something as serious as a rupture and may lead to a permanent disability. There are many factors that contribute to sports related foot and ankle injuries, which include failure to warm up properly, not providing support or wearing bad footwear. Common injuries and conditions athletes face, including:

  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Plantar Fasciosis
  • Achilles Tendinitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains

Sports related injuries are commonly treated using the RICE method. This includes rest, applying ice to the injured area, compression and elevating the ankle. More serious sprains and injuries may require surgery, which could include arthroscopic and reconstructive surgery. Rehabilitation and therapy may also be required in order to get any recovering athlete to become fully functional again. Any unusual aches and pains an athlete sustains must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Sioux Falls, SD . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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