Ankle Braces vs taping: What to do after an ankle sprain.

Do you sprain your ankles?

If you’re anything like us then you’re no stranger to the odd ankle twinge. Or maybe you’ve even been unlucky enough to have a serious ankle injury – ouch!
The thing is, ankle sprains and instability are just so common.
Whether you’re walking along the street and happen to stumble on the curb. Or perhaps you’re playing sport or just going for a casual walk or run for fitness. Whatever you’re doing, you’re always faced with potential ankle rolling injuries.

In fact, the more you do it, the easier it becomes to do it again.

Anyway, case in point is that ankle sprains are bad news.

They cause pain and swelling, you miss out on doing what you love, and then even worse…is the chance of the darn thing recurring!

What are your options when you sprain an ankle?

Today I’m going to share two options to prevent recurrence in ankle sprains. This is helpful especially for those people that are returning to sport and need to be prepared for rapid direction change and impact.

Ultimately the role of taping and bracing is very similar. That is to ensure a safe return to sport, provide support where the affected structures are not able to do their job. This also aids in the healing process and to give you confidence to return to your pre – injury condition – yay!
In cases where you are not recovering from an ankle injury, ankle supports can still be sought to reduce the likelihood of an injury occurring in the first place.

High impact sports with lots of directional changes are good examples of where ankles supports can play an important prevention role.

But in most cases, the aim of using an ankle support is to return to a functional and confident level. You want to get to where taping or bracing is no longer required.
Here’s  a couple of things for you to consider when deciding between using ankle taping versus an ankle brace device. Then it’s really up to personal preference.

Ankle Braces:

Ankle braces were cultivated from the concept of ankle taping but with a significant advantage for some.

They are self-applied, reusable, and adjustable. Because you only purchase the product once, they are also more cost-effective (depending on how long you will need to use it of course).
However, athletes often find using ankle braces uncomfortable and unstable when wearing inside shoes in comparison to ankle taping.

New types of braces are constantly being developed so the comfort and stability is always improving. However ankle taping still leads the race in this department.

Ankle taping:

Ankle taping is a great way to get the support needed to return to your desire activity as well as facilitate the healing process.

Taping is a preferred choice for many people because it’s so light weight. It can provide more support than braces in many cases.

There are however some draw backs.

If you’re going to need to tape your ankle for an ongoing period then it is more expensive. Plus it’s very difficult to self-apply in comparison to an ankle brace. If done poorly, taping can cause cuts or blisters to the foot.

You also need to be aware of skin irritation  or allergies to taping, especially with prolonged use.

Ultimately, the decision of whether to use ankle taping or bracing after having a sprained an ankle depends mostly on what suits you best after taking into consideration the above points. We are all individuals and have different goals and you need to choose what works best for you.

If you are unsure at all, please reach out and one of our team can help point you in the right direction to get back to doing what you love!

Glenferrie Sports and Spinal Clinic is located in Hawthorn. Situated conveniently near public transport and with convenient parking it is central to Camberwell, Kew, Richmond, Toorak and Malvern.

For appointments call 03 9815 2555, or book online here

Posted by Matt
On 16 Jan 2016

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