The ankle is a joint where your foot and leg meet. It is prone to pain and injury because of the weight and pressure it is carrying. Chronic ankle pain is common to athletes and often develops after a repeated injury like sprains that heals prematurely. The most common symptom of ankle joint pain is pain on the outer side of the ankle.
Chronic ankle joint pain is called as such because the pain usually lasts for a prolonged period of time. The pain is usually aggravated during intense activities like running.
Here Are The Different Causes Of Chronic Joint Pain:
1] Ankle Sprain And Fractures
Sprain is a common condition to people who are into sports. This can be caused by weak muscles or tendons that can result in painful ankle joint with a feeling of “looseness”. This can also be caused by running on rough surfaces or wearing uncomfortable high-heeled shoes.
- Sprain and fractures are the most common conditions resulting to severe ankle pain. Sprains are damage to ligaments of the ankle. It is caused by tears in the tissues and usually happens because of a sudden twist of ankle.
- Fractures happen when tissues are damaged because of stress. Both sprains and fractures can be caused by accident in sport activities or strenuous activities.
- This also happens during cold seasons like winter.
- Common symptoms are severe pain or inflammation
- Sometimes Deformity of the ankle especially if too much weight is applied to it and the muscles and tissues can no longer bear weight.
- Simple remedies for these conditions are ice treatment and complete rest. Physical therapy programs are also available and are advised by doctors for fast cure. Some pain medications are also available and prescribed by doctors. Some may be prescribed to use braces and wraps. But for severe cases, surgery and casting are the most common options.
Tendonitis is the swelling of overused tendon due to excessive sports and exercise. Thorough rest can ease the swelling. There are also other therapeutic methods that will help lessen the pain.
- This is also called tendonitis or inflammation of tendons or bands that connect tissue to the bones. The main reasons of Tendonitis are overuse of ankles and overload. Overuse happens because of repetitive activities and overload happens when too much weight and pressure is applied.
- Usual symptoms of tendonitis are burning feeling, tingling or sometimes numbness around the ankle area.
- This can be prevented by wearing well-fitted shoes, by avoiding strenuous exercises and activities, giving too much pressure and weight in the foot. Avoiding running or walking in uneven surfaces can also help. Likewise, evading performing exercises with difficult techniques. As much as possible, avoid sports that may aggravate the condition like running and tennis.
- This is usually treated by cold compress or ice treatment. However, severe cases may require casting or braces.
Neuritis is the swelling of nerve characterized by severe pain and loss of reflexes. It can also result in scar tissue damage. The symptoms are tingling and burning sensation, numbness to complete sensation loss and stabbing pain.
Synovitis refers to the swelling of the lining of the ankle joint called synovium. This lining is used for smoother movements of the joints but if damaged, it may cause inflammation and severe pain. There is also a feeling of tenderness of joints.
Some causes of chronic ankles are: ill-fitting footwear, tarsal tunnel syndrome (squeezed nerve in the ankle) and Osteoarthritis (pain which affects the cartilage and greatly affects older individuals).
The most common diagnosis of recognizing a chronic ankle joint pain is checking the medical history of the patient. Doctors may also perform various tests like x-rays. Prescription is not given right away as the treatment will depend on the diagnosis and the result of the tests. Treatments vary for every condition and it can be either operative or non-operative.
If doctors find that there is no need for surgery or operation, he may just recommend the patient to take anti-inflammatory medications to ease the pain. Other treatments may also include injections, physical therapy, ankle exercises and ankle braces.
Severe ankle joint pain is not just a condition suffered by elders but most of the time, experienced by athletes like runners and tennis players because of the amount of pressure and stress that is given to their ankles.
Doctors May Also Advice Injectable
Do not self-medicate as much as possible or take medication for pain without doctor’s prescription. It may not be able to help or even aggravate your condition. It is still better to discuss it with your doctor. Your doctor’s advice may depend on his/her diagnosis. Surgery may be necessary for some cases. This kind of surgery should be done in a reputable clinics or hospitals.
Please note that this condition should not be taken for granted. Ankles, if injured, may cause a bigger problem so make sure to consult your doctor once the symptoms are felt and experienced. So make sure to follow your doctor’s advice and instructions wholeheartedly and be present in your examinations, therapies and treatments.
Read More: Joint Stiffness Causes & Symptoms: An Alarm To Other Joint Disorders
For athletes, use braces for your ankles to prevent sprains and for women, make sure to wear comfortable shoes. If high heels are your favorite indulgence, try to opt for lower heels or ditch the heels in favor of cute flats.
Lastly, it is important to know that severe ankle pain cannot be healed in a short period of time. Treatments may take several months to years. Healing process should not be rushed. Healing will take time.
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In-Post Image: Shutterstock.com & yourfootdoc.com