Rest, ice, compression and elevation are good home remedies for sprained ankles, reports WebMD. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen or naproxen, help alleviate any discomfort.
Doctors recommend resting a sprained ankle until the pain dissipates, states WebMD. Using crutches permits mobility while keeping pressure off the ankle. Applying ice to the ankle for 10 to 20 minutes every hour or two for the first two or three days following the injury alleviates swelling. Keeping the ankle wrapped with an elastic compression bandage for the first day following injury also helps control swelling. Elevating the ankle above the level of the heart for an hour or two each day limits bruising and swelling.
Self-care measures may be sufficient to treat a sprained ankle, but a medical evaluation can assess the extent of the damage, notes Mayo Clinic. Severe sprains may require surgery or physical therapy.