Resting the ankle, limiting weight on the ankle, applying ice to the ankle, compressing the ankle to control swelling and elevating the foot are all first-line treatments that can be employed at home for a sprained ankle, according to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. It is recommended for sprains to be evaluated by a doctor right away to rule out fractures; if there is a deformity, significant swelling or the ankle can't bear weight, urgent care should be sought.
The R.I.C.E. method of treating sprains is recommended for at-home care. Rest, ice, compression and elevation are the components of the R.I.C.E. guidelines. Rest the ankle by avoiding walking on it, and use crutches if needed. Weight on the ankle should be limited. The use of an ankle brace can help to keep the ankle stable. The application of ice can reduce swelling; avoid putting the ice on the skin directly, and do not use ice for longer than 20 minutes. Compression supports and immobilizes the injury while controlling swelling, and elevation of the foot by propping it above the heart or waist and reclining can provide some relief. Depending on the severity of the sprain, it may be possible to resume regular activity within a few weeks.