Injuries aren't planned, but accidents happen. If you were playing basketball with your friends and ended up with an ankle sprain or sore joint - would you know what to do? There are simple steps you can take to jumpstart your recovery and get you back on the court, field, track, or wherever else you like to be active. An easy acronym to remember is RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation.)
Rest - Don't push it. As hard as it is to sit out of a game or practice, your body will thank you. Ignoring an injury can lead to further damage and a longer recovery.
Ice - Control swelling initially and reduce pain by icing the injured area for 10 minutes at a time. Make sure your ice pack has a light towel in between the ice and the skin to prevent frostbite.
Compression - Use a wrap like an ACE bandage to apply compression to the injured area. Use caution to not wrap it too tight as this may cause a loss of blood flow.
Elevation - Elevate the injured area to help reduce swelling and pain.
See your doctor - The RICE method is for minor sports injuries like sore joints and minor ankle sprains. If your injury is more serious or your symptoms worsen or persist, call your doctor right away. You may need x-rays or an MRI to check for bone or ligament damage. In an emergency situation, call 911 or visit our 24/7 Emergency Department.