Your ankle joints and muscles experience a lot of wear and tear every day, which can take a toll over time. Weak ankles can affect your balance and increase your risk of sprains, which can lead to chronic instability.
Strengthening weak ankles with the following exercises may improve your stability, relieve pain, and help you avoid further injury.
The most common symptom of weak ankles is your ankles turning or rolling to the outside. Other symptoms include:
Sore ankles and feet
Frequent ankle sprains or injuries
Ankle often twisting outward when walking
Trouble keeping your ankles straight in heels
Weak ankles can be caused by injuries and certain conditions. Let’s look at these and how to treat them.
PREVIOUS TRAUMA OR INJURY
Injury to the muscles, ligaments, and bones in and around your ankles can lead to weak ankles, especially if an injury doesn’t heal properly or you injure the ankle more than once.
Ankle injuries include:
sprains and strains
Treatment for chronic ankle instability is based on the results of the examination and tests, as well as on the patient’s level of activity. Nonsurgical treatment may include:
Physical therapy involves various treatments and exercises to strengthen the ankle, improve balance and range of motion and retrain your muscles. As you progress through rehabilitation, you may also receive training that relates specifically to your activities or sport.
Some patients wear an ankle brace to gain support for the ankle and keep the ankle from turning. Bracing also helps prevent additional ankle sprains.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, may be prescribed to reduce pain and inflammation.
In some cases, the foot and ankle surgeon will recommend surgery based on the degree of instability or lack of response to nonsurgical approaches. Surgery usually involves repair or reconstruction of the damaged ligament(s). The surgeon will select the surgical procedure best suited for your case based on the severity of the instability and your activity level. The length of the recovery period will vary, depending on the procedure or procedures performed.
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