Ankle pain is very difficult to endure, and it is important that you explore all of the options that are available to you in treating your ankle pain. There are a number of potential causes that should be explored as well, though it may be very likely that arthritis is the culprit. Arthritis can be caused by an injury to the joint, including a torn ligament, broken bone, or even a severe sprain. Arthritic conditions can also develop systematically over time, so the lack of a traumatic injury does not necessarily rule out arthritis as the cause of your pain.
Understand the Options that Are Available to You
It is always best to consult a physician when it comes to matters of your health. Your physician will likely ask you a series of questions, and will then make a treatment recommendation based on your responses. These questions may include:
- When did you first experience the pain?
- Are there times in which the pain worsens?
- Do certain activities like walking or running exacerbate the pain?
- Is the pain persistent?
- Do you have a history of injury to the foot or ankle?
- What type of treatment have you received in the past?
- Where is the pain located?
- Are you active?
- Are you on any medications?
Based on your responses to these questions, your doctor will be able to recommend a course of treatment that is ideally suited to your individual needs. These treatments may include options that are invasive and non-invasive, and you may be given a choice in the type of treatment that you ultimately receive.
Begin a Weight Loss Program
The amount of weight that you carry plays a major role in the health of your ankles. Through a weight loss program, you may be able to significantly reduce the amount of stress that is placed on your ankles. According to recent studies, the loss of a single pound can result in reducing the stress on your ankles by five pounds. It is therefore possible to reduce the amount of pain that you are experiencing just by shedding some pounds, though if your arthritis is advanced you may require more treatment.
Engage in Exercise and/or Physical Therapy
Exercise that is done under the supervision of a physical therapist can be extremely beneficial for ankle and foot health. Not only will frequent and appropriate exercise help in the weight loss process, but it will also help to strengthen your ankle support system, further reducing the amount of stress that is placed on the ankle.
If the non-invasive options are not effective, it may be time to explore your surgical options. Fortunately, many recent innovations have made the surgical options exceptionally effective in relieving pain and restoring mobility. Total ankle replacement surgery, or arthroplasty, is one such surgical procedure that has benefited from recent innovations in medical technology. Many surgeons are now opting to use modular components in their ankle replacements, allowing them to customize the components based on the specific needs of the patient. These innovations have also resulted in the need for a smaller incision, greater stability, and the return of natural motion.