Diagnosing the cause of your ankle swelling is the most important step to treatment. Learn how swollen ankles happen and how you can relieve pain in three simple steps.

Swollen ankles can seem to flare up out of the blue. Too many hours on your feet, a subtle awkward step or knock can cause your ankle to swell.

More often than not a swollen ankle isn’t cause for alarm and will likely subside after a bit of rest and elevation. However, if it’s accompanied by acute pain, redness, heat or other uncomfortable symptoms, your ankle swelling may be a sign of a larger issu1.

When you experience ankle swelling it’s either a sign of a buildup of fluid or inflamed cells – or both. The general medical term for swelling is edema which refers to when your organs, skin, or other parts of your body enlarge.

What Causes Swollen Ankles?

Mild ankle swelling is very common and usually harmless. However, it’s important to understand what can cause swollen ankles so you can seek urgent treatment if necessary.

These are the eight most common swollen ankles causes:

  1. Standing or walking for extended periods of time. Too much weight bearing pressure on your ankle joint can cause fluid retention and swelling.
  2. A medication side effect. Fluid retention in the ankles, causing swelling, is a common side effect of many medications including those for, inflammation, diabetes, depression and cardio problems.
  3. An Injury. If you fall or take a hard knock to the ankle you can sprain or fracture it and experience ankle swelling.
  4. An infection. Swelling is a big part of inflammation – your immune system’s response to infection. It’s a result of excess fluid, white blood cells, hormones and nutrients flooding to the infected – and now swollen – ankle.
  5. Lymphedema. This condition causes fluid retention and swelling in either your arms or lower legs. It happens after your lymph nodes having been removed or damaged.
  6. Blood clot(s). If the blood vessels around your lower leg have a blockage, fluid can leak into your tissue and result in a swollen ankle.
  7. Disease. Disease of the heart, liver or kidney can influence the distribution of fluid around your body and cause swelling.
  8. Pregnancy. Fluid retention is a very common (and harmless) side effect of pregnancy.
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Three Tips for Effective Swollen Ankles Treatment

Diagnosing the cause of your ankle swelling is the most important step. If you’re unsure why your ankle is swollen, consult a qualified physician as soon as possible. Severe sprains, fractures and underlying medical conditions require professional medical intervention.

Remember, seeking treatment early is crucial. Lack of attention can make your injury worse.

If you only have a mild strain, follow these three simple steps to help relieve your swollen ankle:

  1. Compress.  A compression bandage or sock can provide pain relief and prevent fluid buildup in your ankles. Be careful to choose one that isn’t too tight. Try Elastoplast’s Elastic Tubular Compression Bandage or an Elastoplast Crepe Bandage for fast, easy relief, support and to reduce swelling.
  2. Elevate. Lie down and rest your swollen ankle above your chest to discourage fluid retention.
  3. Soak. Soak your ankle in a cool Epsom salt bath for 15 to 20 minutes to reduce swelling and pain. 
Swollen ankles treatment
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Although compiled with great care, please note that the tips and advice given on this website by no means substitute medical advice and treatment. If you have or suspect a health problem, consult a doctor and follow medical advice regardless of what you have learned on this website. Always read carefully and follow the instructions for use or the leaflets of our products. For further information about our products, please contact us here.

Always read the label and follow the directions for use.