Sprain is an injury or tear of the ligament. A ligament is a thick, tough, fibrous tissue that connects bones together. Sprains are common in ankle, spine, knee, thigh, hip, elbow, and wrist joints.
Sprain is caused by trauma, overstretching of the joint during sports activities such as basketball and swimming. Some sports such as gymnastics, basketball, football, hockey, and running cause the ligament tear.
Signs and symptoms include pain and swelling of the affected area, skin discoloration, and joint stiffness.
Treatment options include:
- Rest: Rest the affected joint as more damage could result from putting pressure on the injured area.
- Ice: Application of ice packs to the affected area for 15-20 minutes four times a day for several days will help reduce swelling. Wrap the ice in a towel – never place ice directly over the skin.
- Compression: Wrapping the affected joint with an elastic bandage or compression stocking can help to minimize the swelling and support your joint.
- Elevation: Elevating the affected joint above heart level will also help reduce swelling and pain.
Your doctor may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to help ease pain and inflammation.