The feet are the most neglected part of the body yet also the most overburdened. Your feet perform basic mobility tasks such as walking, running and jumping which make them an integral factor in performing our everyday duties.
Specifically, the ankles of the feet receive most of the weight of our bodies as we go along hence, they are reasonably calloused and are oftentimes the target of injuries. Knowing that we become unable to function with ease if they are not in their best condition, how do we take care of our feet ankles? For this question, I will share my several personal ways to solve this problem.
Prevention of feet trauma and diseases is first and foremost the best and safest way in feet ankle care. Avoiding any conditions that may contribute to the irritation of the ankles both externally and internally does not only save you the hassle of walking with swollen ankles but also promote your overall health and wellbeing.
#1 Exercise and Proper Mobility
If you were born with an unusual anatomy (one leg longer than the other, uneven number of toes) and find it a little difficult to walk properly, much less run and jump, bear in mind that straining your feet, especially the shock absorber ankle, will do you no good. Learn to walk at a comfortable pace. Run and jump carefully, and at paces and angles you feel less stress with. However, do not run and jump unless you absolutely need to do so.
If you are constantly sitting down or are standing for long hours at a time, muscles can become stiff and sore. Observe stretching whenever you can to condition the muscles on your ankles to avoid shocks when you change positions. Calf raises and runner’s stretch, as well as more sophisticated disciplines in body balance such as yoga and Tai Chi are sure-fire exercises to keep your ankles in top shape.
#2 Following a proper diet
Healthy bones mean better weight distribution and less pressure on the ankles. Dairy products like milk, cheese and yoghurt, and some green leafy vegetables like broccoli and collard greens are excellent source of calcium. Minimize the intake of refined grains, sugar, pastries and junk foods (trans fat), red meat (saturated fat), sunflower and vegetable oils, corn and soybean as they contain elements that can contribute tissue inflammation.
Make diets rich in iron, zinc and calcium supplements your greatest friends as they will ensure better muscle and bone development.
#3 Shoes are made for walking (comfortably)
Choose the proper footwear that balances comfort and perfect ankle posture. Flat footwear like doll shoes might appeal for people who are required to stand for long hours, however, ankles are recommended to be elevated at ¼ inch.During parties and other formal events where you wear heeled shoes, always bring with you flats or slippers to relieve your ankles of the stress.
Additionally, keep it a mantra to massage, elevate and ice your ankles especially when they absorbed a reasonable amount of shock through the activities you performed during the day.
How to Care For An Ailing Ankle
In some cases, albeit inevitably, we experience irritation in our ankles such as soreness, sprain and trauma. The ankles heal themselves over time but it is very important to contribute to the healing process (or essentially play down the factors that might make the irritation worse).
#1 To exercise or not to exercise
Many feet and ankle exercises are free to be performed for the purpose of rehabilitation. These exercises are a form of therapy to improve blood circulation, restore ankle motion and reduce irritation.
Isometric In-and-Out and Balance-and-Wobble-Board exercises are some of these therapies which carefully condition the ankles to accept more and more weight to support the body while reducing fluid build-up and rebuild proper blood circulation in the areas.
#2 Diet – as always
The intake of food and foodstuff mentioned above are not minimized in this case but are completely removed from the diet. This is to completely aid in the healing process of the ankles. Learn to say no to temptation! Remember that a healthy body supplies for a healthy well-being.
#3 Home Remedies are relievers for irritation-driven ankles
1. Tonic Water Solution
Soaking swollen ankles in cool water – cold, if you can handle it – helps soothe the swell. It doesn’t hurt that soaking your feet is a therapeutic practice in itself.
2. Salt Water Solution
Epsom salts are discovered to have the same effects as the tonic water solution on irritated ankles – oftentimes it gives better and faster relief! Throw in some of it in the bath or in a basin for your aching feet.
3. Grapefruit Essential Oil
This therapeutic ingredient can also be added in warm baths or simply be used to apply on your swollen ankles during a massage.
Whenever you get the chance to do so (even when you’re at the workplace or anywhere else), always elevate your feet to lessen the gravity that they receive. Prop your feet on furniture or on pillows for added comfort.
Always keep in mind that the ankles are a vital part of the feet and are in turn essential to the complete and proper execution of our everyday activities. Always take the time to tend to their health by regular massage and stretching, proper diet (always!) and choosing the correct pair of footwear.