Try these simple things to help ease the symptoms.
1. To rest or not to rest.
Acute sprains of joints or muscles in the spine usually respond better to keeping mobile rather then lying in bed and waiting for the pain to go away. Simple things such as walking and avoiding long periods of sitting and standing will help.
Extremity joint sprains/ muscle strains are often suited to resting initially to prevent further damage to tissues. However gentle movements of sprained ligaments in the knee or ankle will help will help retrain receptors which send messages back to the brain about where the area is in space, essential for normal function. It also helps to get fresh blood to the area and drain away waste products. Initially this movement should only be performed in a way that is not painful.
2. Just take Nurofen or Voltaren right?
Wrong!!! These medications are classified as non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAID’s). New research suggests that inflammation carries certain cells, which are crucial for tissue repair. Hence limiting the inflammatory response will result in delayed tissue healing. If you feel the need to take pain relief, please call the clinic and speak to our staff about what is appropriate for you.
3. What about ice?
Ice can be used and will provide some pain relief particularly for the first 48 hours. We advise you to apply for no more than 20 minutes at a time. After this period it is important get the area looked at so that an effective management can be arranged.
Please note research into the application of ice is mixed and may not increase your recovery rate.
4. When to seek help?
o Pain is severe, unable to weight bear.
o Pain is waking you at night
o Excessive redness, or tightness around the skin.
o Pins, needles or significant weakness in the extremities.
o Severe trauma associated with the injury
o Recurrent injury.
5. What can an osteopath do to help?
An osteopath can examine certain movements and perform specific tests to help provide a diagnosis and approximately how long the tissue will take to heal. They can then refer for further investigations (if required) or provide you with specific hands on treatment and rehabilitative advice. This may improve your recovery time as well as identify potential predisposing factors, as management of these will help to prevent injury re-occurrence.
At Koru Natural therapies our Osteopaths are happy to help you manage your pain and get you back into doing the things you enjoy doing.
Need further assistance or to make an appointment, please call 9736-9408, or book online.
Thank-you to Dr James Gillard for writing this post.