People can live with injuries that may seem minor, but leave them at risk for long-term consequences. In an attempt to push yourself harder or simply walk off the foot and ankle pain, for example, you can unknowingly worsen your pain and cause more extensive damage. To help you understand when to seek orthopedic attention to care for an injury, here are some of the kinds of strain that can bring more adverse effects if left untreated.
Top 3 Neglected Injuries That Have Lasting Effects
Caused by the compression of a nerve in the lower back, sciatica pain can affect the back as well as the hips and outer side of the legs. Symptoms include tingling, numbness, or weakness in these areas. Since back pain is such a common condition, people with sciatica often go for years without realizing that that’s the source of their discomfort. Left untreated, sciatica can lead to painful spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal canal which can cause weakness and, in severe cases, paralysis.
2. Meniscus Tear
The meniscus is a cartilage that provides a cushion between your thigh and shin bones. If it becomes loose during exercise or strenuous activities, it can block the knee joint, resulting in a meniscus tear, which is frequently seen in athletes. Left untreated, the rubbing of the torn meniscus on the surrounding cartilage leads to the degeneration of the joint and eventually compromises your mobility.
3. Ankle Sprain
One of the most common orthopedic injuries is the ankle sprain, which can happen from tripping, uncomfortable footwear, and sports injuries. Many people make the mistake of getting back on their feet too soon after this injury, assuming their foot and ankle pain will subside on its own. However, even when the pain seems manageable, you increase your chances of future sprains and ankle osteoarthritis if you don’t give your legs a chance to heal. If you sustain this injury, use the RICE method of resting, icing, compressing, and elevating the area to promote healing.
If you’re experiencing a musculoskeletal condition such as neck and back pain, foot and ankle pain, or sports injuries, visit the orthopedic doctors at Advanced Orthopaedic Associates in Wayne, NJ. Proudly serving Bergen, Passaic, and Morris Counties, they provide individualized treatments to help you find relief from your symptoms. With a time-tested, two-phase approach, they focus on recovery as well as prevention. Visit them online for a list of what they do, or call (973) 839-5700 to schedule an appointment for foot and ankle pain.