Foot and Ankle Sports Injuries
We may not be as fast as cheetahs or acrobatic as monkeys, but humans are still built to move. This means that your foot and ankle structures are designed for both wide flexibility and major force absorption.
However, our bodies are not invincible. Sometimes we take on too much force for one reason or another, resulting in a sports injury that forces us to slow down—or at least should.
Taking proper care of a sports injury both in terms of recovery and reconditioning are both essential to reducing risks of further problems and complications in the future. Our experts here at Foot & Ankle Centers of Illinois can help athletes of all stripes and levels receive the best treatment for their needs.
Types of Sports Injuries
A wide variety of sports injuries can occur in the feet and ankles, but they can be broadly categorized into two categories.
First is traumatic injuries. These are caused by sudden, severe force or impact that creates an injury. This may include landing wrong on the foot, or having the ankle forced to twist farther than it is intended to go. Fractures and sprains tend to fall into this category.
Second is overuse injuries. These can happen when the body takes on more stress than it is conditioned to receive over a period of time. This can be the result of pushing too hard too quickly (such as a fast sprint or hard basketball game without warming up) or by the accumulation of sustained force over time without the opportunity to recover (such as running too much without a recovery day).
Common overuse injuries include, but are not limited to:
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Stress Fractures
- Achilles Tendinitis
The Right Treatments for Your Sports Injury
Just as there are multiple forms of sports injuries in the foot and ankle, there are multiple approaches that may be recommended to treat them.
Your first step whenever you suffer such an injury, however, should always be the same: stop whatever you were doing to cause your pain! Trying to “push through” an injury is only going to increase your risk of making it worse. Instead, keep weight off the area and elevate it if possible. Applying ice wrapped in a towel or other barrier for 15-20 minutes at a time can also help reduce pain and swelling within the first day or two of an injury.
Whatever happened, give us a call and let us know what happened. Some minor injuries are treatable at home, but others should receive a professional examination. Even seemingly minor sprains that don’t heal properly can lead to chronic pain and instability in the future.
We treat every sports injury with a thorough evaluation and a review of each patient’s activity goals and needs. We want to ensure we recommend the best forms of treatment to get each patient back into action as quickly as possible without risking re-injury or long-term problems. It’s a balance that requires patience, but the alternative can keep you on the sidelines even longer.
Treatments for sports injuries depend upon the condition and its severity and can range from basic traditional methods to advanced technology. Recommendations we might make can include:
- Rest – A necessity in just about every case, but it does not always mean you must be laid up the entire recovery period. We can help you determine ways to work gradual exercise or cross-training into this time, if possible.
- Custom Orthotics – If an abnormality in foot structure is causing too much stress in certain areas of the foot, orthotics can redistribute forces across the foot properly.
- MLS Laser Therapy – An advanced treatment (at our Joliet, Orland Park, and Schaumburg offices) that can stimulate pain relief and faster recovery via the use of specified application of light energy.
- Aquaroll Therapy – An advanced treatment (in our Joliet office only) where the feet are submerged in a tub filled with warm water and more than 30,000 glass beads, which vibrate against the feet and stimulate blood flow.
- Anti-inflammatory and pain relieving medications.
Get the Care You Need and Get Back in the Game
Don’t wait on getting the treatment you need for a sports injury. The sooner it’s addressed, the quicker you will be able to get back to full strength!
Call any of our area offices to schedule an appointment with us. If you have any questions or just prefer to contact us electronically, please feel free to fill out our online contact form instead.
For New Patients
Your first visit to Advanced Foot and Ankle Centers of Illinois establishes a vital foundation for our relationship with you. During the first visit, we make sure to obtain important background information, like your medical history, and give you time to get to know your doctor.
All our offices use an electronic check-in system called PHREESIA. There is no paperwork to fill out beforehand, but it is still a good idea to arrive a few minutes earlier for your appointment.
Being well prepared for your appointment will ensure that your doctor has all the information needed to provide the best possible care for you. It will also help relieve any unnecessary anxiety you may be feeling. Please feel free to review the educational materials and doctor bios provided on this website as well.