Ankle Sprains\nAfter taking a tumble on or off the field, you immediately feel pain shooting from your ankle and realize it\u2019s difficult to bear weight on it.\nBad news: You may have suffered an ankle sprain.\nBefore learning how to treat an ankle sprain, it\u2019s important for you to understand what it actually is. According to the National Institutes of Health, a sprain is defined as an injury to a ligament, which is tissue connecting two or more joints. When you sprain your ankle, one or more ligaments are either stretched or torn.\nSign You May Have Sprained Your Ankle\nCommon symptoms of a sprained ankle include pain, bruising, or swelling. In some cases, symptoms are too severe, disabling use of your ankle. Learning how to properly treat an ankle sprain can help prevent further damage.\nIf you don\u2019t have immediate access to a medical professional, you may need to wrap the injury yourself. Protecting a sprained ankle is critical to preventing further injury.\nHeather Rosen, physician and medical director of the UPMC Urgent Care North Huntingdon, demonstrates how to wrap an ankle sprain yourself.\nHow To Wrap A Sprained Ankle\n\n\nEnsure you wrap the bandage above and below the joint.\nBegin your wrap several inches above the injured ankle.\nStart your wrap on the inside of the leg and make two wraps around the ankle for stability.\nContinue wrapping around the foot and ankle in a figure eight pattern.\nUse Velcro or a fastener at the end to stabilize your wrap.\n\nFind out more information on wrapping wrist sprains and ankle sprains.\nKey Points to Remember When Wrapping an Ankle Sprain\nBefore you go about wrapping a sprained ankle, make sure you have the necessary supplies such as:\n\nScissors\nSoap and water (to clean your ankle before wrapping)\nElastic bandage\nPre-wrap tape or locking tabs\n\nImportant steps to remember when wrapping an ankle sprain are:\n\nWrap above and below the joint.\nWrap in a figure-eight pattern, overlapping 50 percent.\nMake sure the wrap is taut.\n\nTreating an Ankle Sprain\nSimilar to a wrist sprain, the R.I.C.E. method, which stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation, is a common treatment for ankle sprains.\nYou may even consider using crutches the first few days to minimize pain and prevent further injury. Ice and elevate your ankle the first two to three days after your sprain for 20 minutes a few times a day to decrease swelling. Avoid putting any more weight than is necessary on your injured ankle and get plenty of rest.\nAt times, a severe sprain can mask a broken ankle. If the pain and swelling do not improve after a few days, you should see a doctor.\nIn the future, you can avoid re-spraining your ankle by performing warm-up exercises before any physical activity or sports practice, wearing proper footwear, and taking frequent breaks if you begin to feel tired or weak.