Ligament Sprains
/Muscle Strains

Ligamentous sprains and muscular strains are common injuries to the body. These two words are often used interchangeably, yet it is important to understand that they are different types of injuries, and need to be treated as such.

What is a Sprain?

A sprain is an injury involving the stretching or tearing of a ligament (the tissue that connects bone to bone) or a joint capsule, which stabilizes and supports the body's joints.

What causes Sprains?

Sprains occur when a joint is forced beyond its normal range of motion, most common being ankles, knees, and foot arches. Also due to:

  • Direct or indirect trauma that knocks a joint out of position, and overstretches, and in severe cases, ruptures the supporting ligaments, for example, landing on an outstretched arm; jumping up and landing on the side of the foot; or running on an uneven surface.
  • Weak muscles and poor physical shape
  • Poor stretching/warm ups before exercise
  • Lifting heavy objects
  • Hormonal interferences (e.g. during pregnancy)
What is a Strain?

Strains are injuries that involve the twisting, pulling or tearing of a muscle and/or tendon (fibrous cords of tissue that attach muscles to bone).

What causes Strains?

A muscle strain occurs when a muscle is stretched and suddenly contracts, as with running or jumping. Common muscle strains include hamstrings and groin, due to

  • Overuse-prolonged repetitive movements of muscle and tendons.
  • Inadequate rest breaks during intensive training
  • A direct blow to the body, overstretching or excessive muscle contraction
Chiropractic Treatment of Sprains & Strains

Your chiropractor will first assess your particular problem and treat accordingly. Typical treatment involves advice on icing the area, use of electro-modalities, performing gentle stretches/ mobilisation exercises, muscle testing and spinal manipulation of the kinetic chain (e.g. if you sprained your ankle - treatment may include adjusting your foot, knee, hip, pelvis and spine). Home exercises and advice may also be given - which all enables you to have control over your own problem. Your chiropractor cannot be with you 24/7, and by giving you the education on how to help your problem, your body can heal itself faster. Once your body has gotten over the acute inflammatory stage, training may begin on rehabilitation of the muscles/tendons/ligaments - your chiropractor may give you stability training exercises and core stability advice.