Sprains and strains are very common injuries that affect muscles and ligaments (strong bands of tissue around joints that connect one bone to another). They often occur if you change direction or speed suddenly, fall and land awkwardly, or collide with an object or person, such as when playing sports.
A sprain means one or more of your ligaments have stretched, twisted or torn. A strain means muscle fibres have stretched or torn.
As well as pain, a sprain or strain can cause swelling, bruising and tenderness, and may result in you being unable to put weight on your foot.
Most sprains and strains can be managed at home using PRICE therapy (protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation) and painkillers.
You can self-refer into community physiotherapy services. Simply call 0207 871 0545 to make an appointment. Your initial contact with one of our chartered physiotherapists may be over the phone, where you will either be given advice on appropriate treatment, or a face-to-face consultation will be arranged.
Should you wish to speak to your GP first, simply make an appointment with your local practice. If your GP refers you, one of our patient care advisers will contact you within 48 hours to arrange an appointment.