Ligaments on both sides of your ankle help to stabilize the joint with every step you take, and when we suffer an ankle sprain, these ligaments can be overstretched and torn. If the sprain is severe or you don’t follow the right treatment plan after an ankle sprain, these supportive ligaments can loosen, meaning your ankles will be less stable and you’ll be prone to ankle foot injury.
But how can you tell that your ankle ligaments have loosened and are putting you at an increased risk of additional injury. Below, we take a look at some of the tell-tale signs of ankle ligament loosening following an ankle sprain.
Loose Ankle Ligament Symptoms
If you are dealing with any of these issues, especially if you recently suffered an ankle sprain, you could benefit from connecting with Dr. McDonald to help tighten your loose ankle ligaments.
- Rolling Your Ankle More Often – If you’ve noticed that you’re rolling your ankle more often, even if it doesn’t always result in a sprain, it’s a clear indication that your ligaments are loose and your ankle is a little less stable. If you’re rolling your ankle on surfaces that are pretty level, it’s a sign that your ankle isn’t getting the stability it needs.
- Feels Unstable – Another obvious indication that your ankle ligaments may be loose is if your ankle feels unstable. But what does it mean to feel unstable? Well, if you’ve lost confidence in your ankle, you avoid certain activities because of your ankle or you’re just worried that you’ll sprain your ankle again, that can be the result of a subconscious feeling of instability in your ankle. If you’re shying away from activities because you don’t trust your ankle to handle the pressure, it’s likely due to ankle ligament loosening.
- Chronic Dull Pain – If you’re dealing with chronic discomfort or pain in your ankle region, even if it’s rather dull in nature, it may be an indication of ligament loosening or an unresolved issue as a result of a previous sprain.
- Swelling – If your ankles are loose, they are more likely to regularly stretch past a normal range of motion. This excessive motion can end up triggering an inflammatory response, meaning your ankle may swell a little. Chronic ankle swelling, even if it’s rather mild, is an indication of excessive ligament motion likely due to damaged or loose ligaments.
- Stiffness – A final symptom that might suggest you’re dealing with ankle laxity is stiffness. Even though the ligaments are prone to excessive motion when they are loose, the same inflammatory response that leads to swelling can lead to stiffness. Swelling is a natural bodily response to help limit movement at the injury site, so your ankle may actually feel stiff more frequently if excessive ligament movement is leading to ankle inflammation.
If you’re dealing with any of these symptoms, or your ankle just doesn’t feel the same as it did prior to your sprain or fracture, reach out to Dr. McDonald’s office today. We have a number of conservative and hands-on techniques for helping to strengthen injured ankle ligaments and restoring confidence in your ankles and feet. For more information, or for help with your unrelated foot issue, give Dr. McDonald a call today at (860) 244-8889.