The ankle is a susceptible joint in the body and is easily injured. Non-surgical treatment methods could help treat mild injuries. However, when an ankle injury is severe, such as with a ligament tear or a fracture, surgery may be necessary.
Managing ankle pain can drastically change your daily life, so it’s always best to see a doctor at the initial indications of injury. If non-surgical techniques have not been effective, surgery can help you get back to normal.
For the first few weeks after you are home from surgery, it is natural to feel some pain and discomfort in your ankle area. You may also find that doing even the slightest of activities tires you out, or aggravates the pain.
It is essential to give your ankle complete rest for at least the first two weeks after the surgery. Once the initial rest phase is over, you can start with a few tips to effectively manage the pain and keep it in check.
1. Take Your Pain Medication On Time
- Please keep track of your pain and note whether it remains constant in its intensity or gets better or gets worse. Taking medication on time will help you give the right information to your doctor so that the pain medication can be changed or revised accordingly.
- Follow the timing suggested by your doctor so that the medicines are as effective as they are supposed to be.
2. Physiotherapy Exercises
- Did you know that physiotherapy sessions can effectively help to reduce your pain, strengthen the muscles and joints in your ankle area? Do all of the above prevent the pain from coming back? Your physiotherapist will get an assessment of your overall health and create an exercise plan that is specifically suited to your needs.
- The best part about starting a physiotherapy plan is that even after the sessions are over, you can practice them at home alone and benefit from the results.
3. Deep Breathing
- Deep breathing exercises can help you stay calm and ease your pain sensations. The best part about deep breathing is you can do it anywhere, in the comfort of your home and on your own. Sit down in a quiet part of the house and take slow deep breaths for about 3 to 5 seconds.
- Hold your breath for about 2 seconds and breathe out gently. Repeat this a few times and repeat the exercise a few times a day.
4. Distract Yourself From The Pain
- Distracting yourself from thinking about the pain will also help in easing the pain as well as discomfort. After the first few days of surgery, your doctor will reduce your pain killer dosage, which means that you may feel the pain suddenly and with more intensity. Instead of always thinking about the pain you are in, try to engage yourself in simple activities that you can do while resting, and that will keep you occupied.
- Depending on your interest, you can read, listen to music, watch favorite movies, play board games, or do something that will help you stay busy and relaxed.
5. Using An Ice Pack
- Using an ice pack will help to reduce any swelling in the area where you had the surgery, and also reduce the pain. You can place some ice cubes in a Ziploc bag to make an instant ice pack. In case you do not have ice ready at home, you can also use any frozen food pack, such as frozen peas or frozen corn packs. However, make sure that if you use a food pack as your ice pack, you do not use it for consumption but throw it away.
- Place a small towel on your surgery area and place the ice pack over it. Do not place the ice pack directly on your skin. Keep it for a little time, but remove it if the skin starts turning red. In any case, please do not use it for more than 10 minutes at a time.