The function of ligaments is to hold the bones together. Sprains occur when these ligaments get stretched and torn. It is found that most sprains occur around joints like the ankles, knees and fingers with the ankles being the worst affected part. For getting complete relief from the pain caused by sprains, adequate rest is essential. It generally takes a couple of weeks for the sprains to be cured completely. But, some sprains require a longer period of rest.
Ligaments usually get sprained as the joints get twisted. People who undergo car accidents also get their joints sprained. Symptoms associated typically with ligament sprain include pain, tenderness and swelling in the injured area. Due to pain, mobility is often hindered.
X-rays provide an accurate picture of the precise joint condition. In case of severe ligament damage especially in parts, which demand frequent movement such as knees, a splint is used to keep the injured area immobile. Without proper rest, complete heal will not occur. It is important to use the splint till the prescribed period.
Ligaments get sprained easily during exercise sessions. Warming up the muscles before the commencement of the session will help in reducing the sprain. It is also advisable to wrap weak and vulnerable muscles with support bandages before doing heavy exercise.
If you find your joints to swell as an after effect of sprain, it is always better to keep the affected joint elevated. It should be kept at a height above the heart level. Such a posture will ensure increased blood flow to the affected part and the swelling will reduce in size considerably. In some cases, doctors give a tetanus shot if the skin happens to be scratched or torn. In such a case, it is normal for the arm to turn red and swollen. It is not a cause of worry as it is part of body’s reaction to the injected medicine.