It can be very worrying when you feel an unexpected and unexplained pain in your body.
If you injured yourself somehow, at least you would know what was going on and how to treat it.
But when the pain just seems to come out of nowhere, it can be hard to know what to do.
For example, ankle pain typically occurs due to an injury, such as a sprain or a fracture. So when your ankle starts to hurt, and you can’t remember injuring it, it may signify something else.
Osteoarthritis involves the deterioration of the cartilage in your joints. This cartilage acts as a cushion between the bones, and when it starts to wear away, the bones can rub against each other, causing pain, stiffness, and inflammation.
Suppose your doctor has diagnosed you with osteoarthritis. In that case, they may prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to help relieve the pain and inflammation and recommend lifestyle changes, such as exercising and losing weight.
Gout is another form of arthritis related to the buildup of uric acid in the joints. This uric acid can form crystals, which can then cause pain and inflammation. Gout more often occurs in the big toe, but it can also affect other joints, such as the ankle.
Gout treatment typically involves taking medication to reduce inflammation and manage the pain, as well as diet and lifestyle changes.
Achilles tendonitis is a condition that causes inflammation in the Achilles tendon, which runs from the heel to the calf. Repetitive stress on the Achilles tendon, such as from running, can cause wear and tear, leading to tendon inflammation.
Recovery involves a careful combination of rest and stretching, typically anti-inflammatory or corticosteroid medications. If the condition is severe, surgery may be necessary.
Your feet should have an arch in the middle, which helps distribute your weight evenly and absorb shock. Some children don’t develop this arch – a condition known as flat feet – which may lead to joint pain and other problems later in life.
If these arches (tendons) weaken and lose their shape later in life, these fallen arches can cause pain, especially in the ankles and knees.
Treatment will often focus on strengthening the tendons and muscles around the ankle and foot and wearing orthotic inserts in your shoes.
Ask Your Doctor
Although it might be a simple sprain that will heal independently, it may also be a sign of a progressive degenerative disease that will get much worse if not properly managed.
Unexplained pain is never something to ignore, especially if it persists, worsens, or prevents you from doing your normal activities.
If you’re experiencing ankle pain, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss the possible causes and treatment options. Tests such as CT scans, X-rays, ultrasounds, and blood tests can help your doctor diagnose the problem and get you back on your feet as soon as possible.