Around 4 year ago I tore ligaments in my ankle and was on crutches, however since then the ankle has been quite weak. Now and again my ankle seems to 'give way' i can be stood there and it will just randomly bend and go all weird, it happens more when im in heels and im surprised i havent snapped my ankle the amount it bends to the side. One night out I was just stood talking and it gave way and I couldnt control it it bent to one side then the other, resulting in the strap on my shoe snapping , luckily the shoe was just about manageable to walk in however it give way twice more that night. Ive been reading up on ankle weakness after injury and read about 'ankle instability' however i only really have one of the symptoms of the 'ankle giving way' it doesnt hurt afterwards nor is it swollen, etc. I dont know if to go to the doctors, i feel like im making a mountain out of a molehill because I can still walk/run on it?? I read about having physio and all these ops however im a student nurse and really cant afford to be having time off for appointments/physio sessions/ops (if it comes to that) i have too much work and cant take time outt of placements as i dont want to fall behind does anyone know of any exercises i could do to try get it abit stronger!
Last edited by DL01; 09-16-2011 at 05:42 AM.
The following user gives a hug of support to DL01:
I recently completed 15 physical therapy sessions after surgery for Hallux Limitus Rigidus (arthritis of the big toe MTP joint).
Since there is really no specific PT for toes, my exercises concentrated on strengthening and stability for my hips, legs and ankle since my gait became more uneven in the years preceding the surgery.
Many of the exercises I did for my ankle can be found online if you search for "ankle exercises for ankle injuries". At home, I continue do all of the exercises I did in my formal PT sessions - they really have made a difference and my ankles really do feel stronger and less wobbly.
My ankle used to give way without pain ( I am famous for breaking the straps on shoes - once in the airport, once at a wedding in the mountains, etc ).
I suggest you research some PT, or do a single session with a physio. If the ligaments are loose, often you can gain a lot of strength back int he muscles to compensate. According to my PT, many people can avoid surgery altogether if their ankles are not painful.
Another suggestion would be to wear a brace to give you a little more stability. How often does it happen that you roll your ankle?
Grace404- Thanks for that! I will have a search round and see what exercises I can do at home as Im going to do serious damage one of these days!
PinkEarthMama- I think i may have to look into this as I need it at a time I can fit round myself, im from the UK so if i saw my doctor I would no doubt be referred to a PT within the NHS and i doubt they would let me choose when i want to see them ha and ill probably put on a waiting list pffft ! My ankle gives way most of the time when im in heels, i fall around all over and look a drunken mess, which im not. It also does it now and again in flats.
When I do 12 hour shifts at the hospital on my placements it does tend to ache so I put the support bandage on I have when i get home! I cant go on like this though ill end up breaking something at this rate!
When a ligament is badly torn, often it heals at only 50-70% of its original strength. Couple that with a female tendancy to be more flexible in the ligaments anyway, and it can be a recipe for chronic laxity.
A few of the exercizes that my physio gave me:
Drawing alphabets with my toes in the air.
Laying a towel out and scrunching it with my toes ( start with toes on the edge of the towel, then pull the towel under my foot using my toes.. being very careful not to scoop the towel sideways... straight from toe to heel )
Towel squeezes - i sit with a towel between my feet and push in with the side of my foot to squeeze the towel.
Balancing - holding onto a chair, i set my foot EXACTLY right and attempt to balance for a few seconds. I really suck at this one.
I'm in Canada and we don't get to choose our surgeons, etc, either. I happen to have a great friend whose a physio, and these are the motions she gave me to do. Sadly, I'm awaiting reconstruction surgery on my ankle and I'm pretty terrible at them!
Because it might take time for you to get in to see a surgeon or physio, I would get the wheels turning now. Even if you aren't having much pain with these falls, you may be doing damage to the joint.
In the meantime, wear supportive shoes, no high heels, and possibly wear a brace if you are going to be on your feet for a long time. I found that the lace-up braces from the drugstore were supportive, comfortable and discreet.