Chronic Ankle Instability

What Is Chronic Ankle Instability (CAI)?

Chronic Ankle Instability (CAI) is a condition in which the ankle recurrently “gives away” or rolls unexpectedly. This condition is often caused by weakened ankle ligaments after a significant ankle sprain injury that has not been completely rehabilitated, especially affecting the lateral (outside) part of the ankle. This can make individuals more susceptible to further damage to the ankle ligaments and recurring ankle sprains in everyday life. Approximately 20-40% of people may develop chronic ankle instability following their first ankle sprain.

How Do I Know If I Have Ankle Instability?

Here are some common signs and symptoms:

  1. Feeling of unsteadiness: a sensation of the ankle giving way or twisting easily, especially on an uneven surface or during activities involving a quick change of direction.

  2. Pain or tenderness at the ankle.

  3. Persistent discomfort and swelling surrounding the ankle joint.

  4. Recurrent ankle sprains: experiencing frequent giving way when walking or even standing.

Physiotherapy treatment options for chronic ankle instability include ankle rehabilitation exercises, ankle taping, and footwear advice which aim to improve ankle muscle strength, proprioception, and balance.

If you are experiencing any symptoms of ankle instability or are concerned about your wobbly ankle, schedule a consultation with Unique Physio today.

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