The difference between ankle sprains and strains


If you love to exercise, you may or may not have already experienced ankle pain. Rolling your ankle while engaged in physical activity is the most common way to cause an ankle sprain or strain. Though they may sound similar, they are actually different in which tissues they effect. We at Mercer-Ocean Podiatry in New Jersey are committed to educating our patients about common injuries and what they can do to prevent them. If you have suffered an ankle injury, our experienced podiatrists will get you started on a treatment plan. 

An ankle sprain occurs when a ligament, which stabilizes and supports your joints, is overstretched or torn. Direct or indirect trauma that knocks the joint out of position is what usually causes an ankle sprain. 

Symptoms of an ankle sprain include:

- Pain

- Bruising

- Swelling

- Inflammation

An ankle strain occurs when there is trauma to a muscle or tendon, which are fibrous cords of tissue that attach muscle to bone. Repeated stress and impact on your muscles and tendons is what ultimately causes an ankle strain. No matter how fit you are, it’s possible to overdo activity. An ankle strain is your body’s way of telling you that it can’t take anymore!

Symptoms of an ankle strain include:

- Pain

- Muscle spasms

- Muscle weakness

- Swelling

- Cramping

- Inflammation

In most cases, ankle injuries are healed with ice and rest. However, a severe injury will need to be seen by a specialist. It’s important not to prolong your checkup! Call us today so that one of our experienced podiatrists can assess the damage and get you started on a treatment plan. 

Mercer-Ocean Podiatry, PC is located at two New Jersey locations for your convenience. You can find our Mercerville office at 2103 Mercerville-Whitehorse Rd and our Toms River office at 202 Rte 37 W, Suite 4. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please visit, call our Mercerville office at 609-585-3200, or call our Toms River office at 732-557-4266.

Frank J. Killian, DPM FACFAS Owner, Mercer Ocean Podiatry Board Certified American Board of Podiatric Surgery Fellow American College of Foot & Ankle Surgeons

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