When Your Sprain Warrants a Visit to the Hospital

Sometimes, it’s really difficult to know if you or a loved one needs medical attention. If your child falls during a game and their wrist hurts, should you wait a few days or take them to the doctor right away? If you twist your ankle, how do you know if you’ve sprained it or fractured it? Read on to learn five signs of when you should come in to Trusted Medical Centers - Mansfield for a sprain.

1. Something is obviously wrong

If something is obviously wrong, such your child’s hand is at a very odd angle, or your foot looks unnatural, you should seek medical attention immediately. Any injury that you can clearly see is abnormal should be dealt with quickly.

2. It’s excruciating

When the pain is so bad that you can’t move a limb or put weight on it, you should get help right away. Similarly, if you take an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen or acetaphetamine, and it doesn’t help, you may be dealing with a serious injury.

3. At-home treatment isn’t working

A common approach to treating sprains at home involves the RICE method, which stands for  rest, ice, compression, and elevation.

Rest

Rest the injured part of your body. If it’s your foot, ankle, or knee, take your weight off of it.

Ice

Use an ice pack to help reduce inflammation, applying it for 10-15 minutes at a time.

Compression

A compression bandage can help reduce swelling, but be careful to not wrap it too tightly. You want it to be snug, but not painful.

Elevation

Elevating your injury can also help prevent swelling. If possible, try to raise the injury above your heart.

If these techniques and over-the-counter medication don’t help, you should seek care right away.

4. The pain stays manageable, but it doesn’t leave

If the pain is manageable, but it doesn’t improve in a few days, you should seek care. In addition to pain, if you’re experiencing increasing swelling, you should see a doctor. It’s normal for there to be some swelling if you have a sprain, but it shouldn’t get worse.

5. You develop a fever

Get help right away if you develop a fever. A higher-than-normal temperature can indicate an infection.

If you suspect you might have a sprain or fracture, come see us at Trusted Medical Centers - Mansfield. Our no-wait Trusted Urgent Care and outpatient radiology services will be available starting the beginning of May, with our full-service hospital expected to open in June. For questions and hours, please contact us at 817-225-4809. Once you're here, we'll evaluate your injury and develop a treatment plan to ensure you're back to your best as quickly as possible!

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