An ankle strain is the tearing, pulling or overstretching of one of the muscles or tendons in the ankle. Whereas on the other hand, an ankle sprain is the overstretching or complete or partial tear of a ligament in the ankle. Tendons are the tissue that connects muscle to bone whereas ligaments connects bone to bone, thus any damage to these can be quite debilitating on one’s everyday lifestyle.
Ankle injuries can affect anyone of walking ability but there is evidence to suggest that you are more likely to injure your ankle again if you have already previously injured it, with those with previous ankle injuries describing there to be a higher incidence of the ankle ‘giving way’, a decreased range of motion and some residual pain.
There are differing grades/types of ankle injury depending on the severity of the injury: grade 1 refers to a minor ankle strain where there is some stretching of the muscles and tendons and normally recovers after a few days; grade 2 injuries occur when there is a partial tear and usually requires a longer amount of time for recovery and rehabilitation; grade 3 injuries refer to a complete tear in the muscle or tendon and results in severe pain and instability, these injuries can be accompanied by a bone fracture in the ankle.