What’s a Ligament Sprain?
Ligaments are short bands of connective tissue that hold bones together to help form a joint. You have many ligaments all over your body and surrounding every joint. Ligaments limit excessive movement in certain directions at a joint. As such, they do not stretch and recoil like muscles or tendons. Therefore, if you push a joint past its normal range of movement, you might sustain injury to the ligaments. Like when you suddenly roll your ankle, your ligaments can be stretched too far; this is called a ligament sprain. Common areas for ligament sprains include the ankle, knee, and wrist. (Strains describe an injury to muscles and tendons). Symptoms associated with a ligament sprain include pain, swelling, bruising, and limited movement in the area.
The level of tissue damage sustained determines the grade of the sprain. A Grade 1 sprain occurs when the ligament has been stretched but is intact. If some of the fibres have torn (partial rupture) then it is classified as a Grade 2 sprain. A Grade 3 sprain means a complete tear of the ligament. Each grade and injury will have differing amounts of pain and disability; ranging from mild to moderate, to severe.
In summary, the general trend is; the higher the grade, the more severe the injury, and the greater amount of rehabilitation you will require. It will be important that a physiotherapist assess your situation and diagnose your injury. Consequently, they can help you with the next steps of recovery.
Physiotherapy can help in the accurate diagnosis of your injury and provide pain-relieving treatment. Furthermore, your physio will provide you with information on how to best manage your injury. If you have just sustained an injury, book in for a Hands-On Physio appointment to receive manal therapy for symptom management.
In moderate to severe cases, rehabilitation is required to strengthen the muscles surrounding the joint to provide more stability and proprioception. A Rehab Physiotherapy appointment will get you started with a program and some load management techniques. Similarly, call Bodyworks Subiaco on (08)9381 5565 and we can help you find the most appropriate appointment.