Sprains and Strains

This is an area which is often over complicated in first aid training and really does not need to be. 

Sprains

are where ligaments are damaged between bones

This is like an eleastic band between your bones, it allows for bones to bend and keep the bones pulled together.

 

Think of an over tightened elastic band, keep over tightening it and eventually it will snap. When you twist and ankle for example it will over stretch the ligament causing it to tear of snap. 

This causes the body to react and inflammation, swelling, pain and discolouration will set in. 

Sprain

THINK: twisted ankle (ankle is a joint)

Strains

are often referred to as a pulled muscle

This is where damage causes a "tear" in the muscle fibre causing inflammation, swelling and pain. 

Damaged caused by over reaching or lifting weight beyond our capability. 

Strain
THINK: pulled muscle

In short

Sprains = Joints

Strains = Muscles

Sprains & Strains Treatment

The acronym R.I.C.E. is used for the treatment for sprains and strains, it is also used as treatment for bruises as well. 

R

REST

I

ICE

Rest the injured part to prevent any further movement and further damage

Use ice as this helps reduce the bruising, do not place ice directly onto skin, wrap in plastic then a cloth then apply it onto the effected area

C

COMPRESS

Use a bandage to wrap around the ice to hold it in place, make it firmly secure but not so tight to cut off the blood circulation. 

E

ELEVATE

Finally elevate the injured part, this makes the blood run slower to the injured area, a bruise after all is a type of internal bleed and the colour of the bruise is blood escaping.