Ankle sprain challenged Canadian Larisa Yurkiw’s Olympic dream

Think an ankle sprain is just an inconvenience? This seemingly minor injury almost cut short Larisa Yurkiw’s attempt to compete in this year’s winter Olympics. According to an online article in thestar.com, Yurkiw sprained her ankle in a recent training run at Sochi and she had to be checked by the medical team before continuing with the competition. After a knee injury kept her out of the winter Olympics in Vancouver, Alpine Canada dropped her from the 2014 Canadian team; yet she made an amazing comeback by raising funds to compete independently.

However, in today’s fast-paced world, this often-overlooked injury may also be your downfall. Picture yourself on your cell phone, weighed down with groceries, distracted by squabbling kids on the way into the house when—yikes—down you go! All of a sudden, you find yourself in a heap on the ground; a searing pain radiates up the outside of your foot. Cursing the uneven pavement, you rub your ankle, pick up your shopping and hobble into the house. Congratulations on becoming another ankle sprain statistic! Remarkably, 25,000 Americans sprain an ankle every day.

The sad fact is that many sprains go untreated, which could lead to long-term complications of chronic pain, instability and arthritis. You probably wouldn’t think twice about seeing your podiatrist for corns, hammer toes or bunions, but would you consider an ankle sprain to be anything more than, well…a pain in the ankle! If you sprain your ankle repeatedly, your ligaments may become weak and require surgical repair.

So, here’s what you should do: First, finish your call, put down the groceries and settle the kids. Then, rest, ice, compression, elevation (R.I.C.E). If that doesn’t make the pain go away, contact your Toronto podiatrist who may take an x-ray to rule out a fracture and may bandage or splint the ankle to immobilize it. He may then provide a strengthening exercise program for you to follow once the swelling has gone down.

But meanwhile, make sure you get that uneven sidewalk fixed!