Sprains and strains might sound similar, but they’re actually two different injuries on the body. You can sprain an ankle and strain or pull a muscle, but the pain and swelling are uncomfortable in both cases.
Your body needs time to rest in order to heal, so don’t apply pressure or weight, or try to move the injured joint or muscle. Once you heal, you can start with light exercises until you can play your favorite sports and hobbies again.
Keep reading to discover 5 simple and effective ways to recover from sprains and strains and feel better in no time.
What Are Sprains?
Sprains refer to injuries of the connective tissue between two bones. The most common sprains in the body happen in the wrists, ankles, and knees. In some cases, you can sprain a thumb or a toe, but this is less common.
What Are Strains?
Strains are injuries to the muscle or the tissue that attaches muscles to the bones. Strains are also known as pulled muscles or torn muscles, which are considered serious injuries.
How To Recover From Sprains and Strains?
Now that you know the difference between sprain and strain injuries, here are 5 of the best ways to recover and heal.
1. Rest and Limited Movement
After an injury, the best thing you can do to help your body heal is to rest. In the first few days, keep the movement to a minimum, especially if you’re still in pain. Don’t put any weight or apply any pressure to the injury.
2. Ice Packs and Cooling Treatments
Ice packs and cooling treatments are the best sprains and strains treatment, especially in the beginning when there’s a lot of swelling. The cold will help numb the injured area and reduce the pain. Apply an ice pack to the injury every day in the first few days for at least 15-20 minutes every 3 hours.
To reduce swelling and help the tissue grow back properly, compression is the best solution. Your doctor will wrap your arm or leg in compression bandages and show you how to do the same at home.
The best way to heal sprains and strains and reduce swelling is to keep the injured spot elevated. For example, if you sprained an ankle, you should keep the leg or foot lifted on the bed or a chair. The same goes for sprained wrists – keep the arm elevated above your heart either on a pillow or a sling.
5. Medication and Topical Creams
If you’re in pain or want to reduce the swelling topically, you can get over the counter painkillers like ibuprofen or paracetamol. Your pharmacist can also recommend some topical creams and gels that you can use to massage the injured area.
These Tips Will Help You Recover From Sprains and Strains Faster
Whether you play a sport or got injured during a recreational activity, these tips will help you speed up the recovery process from sprains and strains.
If you need urgent medical help for your injuries, don’t hesitate to contact us at Coastal Urgent Care Thibodaux. Our professionals will schedule an appointment and assess your situation to provide you with the best care possible.