Daughter Hurt Her Ankle

Updated on August 21, 2011
C.M. asks from Harpers Ferry, WV
16 answers

So, we were at my mil's house today and my husbands cousin (adult) was playing tag with my kids in the front yard. I was sitting out there with my sister in law watching. I guess there was a hole in the grass and my daughter didn't see it (I couldn't even see it) and she twisted her ankle in it and fell. She was crying and I sat her down and we put ice on it. Now we are home and I just put her to bed, but she has been complaining of it still hurting her all night. She can walk on it, but she doesn't put all her weight on it. I gave her some tylenol for the pain because she is very allergic to ibuprofen. It is swollen when you compare both ankles, but there is no bruising. Do you think I should just wait it out and have her rest tomorrow and see how she feels and call the dr. on Monday or do you think it would be worth a trip to the ER for an x ray? I sprained my ankle once and I was in horrible pain. I had a removable cast on it too and it still hurt. What should I do?

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So What Happened?

So, this morning she crawled down the stairs and has been sitting on the couch all morning. I was looking at it and it's still just slightly swollen. My husband got up with her this morning so I haven't seen her try to walk on it yet. Still keeping watch on her, but she hasn't complained that it hurts at all. No plans today, so just waiting to see how she feels. Thanks for asking!!

thanks! She is asleep now. I will see how she does in the morning and if it still hurts her then I will take her in. Her Dr. told us that I should never ever give a child asprin, so I just never have. Her ibuprofen allergy is new to us. We just found out about a month ago. We did in office testing for naproxen and she is fine to have that, but I don't have any children's aleve (sp?). I will have to make sure I get some. She never ever really gets sick, which is why I don't have the aleve (sp?).
Thanks for the advice. I will check on her before I go to bed though just to make sure

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answers from Chicago on

If it were an adult, I'd say wait on it. But for a child I'd go have it x-rayed tomorrow, just for peace of mind. You really can't know what is going on without one.

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answers from Chicago on

I would rest it and elevate it. If its super swollen they might not be able to see anything on the xray until some of the swelling goes down.

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answers from San Antonio on

I am glad she is asleep now. Good sign! I. Am going to strongly disagree with those who said ER. ER. Is for life threatening emergencies or for very serious situations where n one would be sleeping at night due pain or illness. I won't be on my soap box too long but part of our medical crisis is due to people not using the ER correctly. Thank you for caring for your child but still being sensible. If she is sleeping well now I would wait until Monday.

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answers from Chicago on

Okay - I'm going to disagree with not going in for the xray if she's in pain. My son twisted his ankle two years ago at a picnic. He put some ice on it for a little while then figured it was just sprained and walked around on it. When we got home, I noticed him not putting full weight on it. It was sore but definitely not very swollen and there wasn't any bruising. I took him to the ER with him complaining the whole way about me over reacting... Yep. Broken. He fractured his growth plate which fortunately for him wasn't as big of a deal because he was already over 6' tall at 15 years old. But he did spend time in a cast while it healed.

Yes, ER's are for emergencies. But a child in pain with a possible broken bone is an emergency. From www.KidsHealth.org:

A broken (fractured) bone requires emergency care. Suspect a possible broken bone if your child heard or felt a bone snap, if your child has difficulty moving the injured part, or if the injured part moves in an unnatural way or is very painful to the touch.

A sprain occurs when the ligaments, which hold bones together, are overstretched and partially torn. Simply overstretching any part of the musculature is called a strain. Sprains and strains generally cause swelling and pain, and there may be bruises around the injured area. Most sprains, after proper medical evaluation, can be treated at home.

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answers from Appleton on

Did you wrap it with an Ace bandage? And Ace will help reduce the swelling and support the ankle. Continue to ice it through the Ace. Since this is not life threatening and she is already in bed I would wait until tomorrow to take her in to a doctor. Can she have aspirin or Aleve? Either one of those will also help with inflamation. Tylenol will help with pain but not inflamation.

Sprains hurt and can take a long time to heal. Since she can walk on it I doubt if it's broken but I'm not a doctor just a Martial Arts Mom.

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answers from Dallas on

We don't compromise on health or safety.

Check it out with a Dr. , xray, what if she needs more than a simple ankle brace. Go to a doc in a box and get an xray to make sure it's just a sprain. That's a no brainer for me.

You know your child better than I do.

I'd have mt child checked out if she was in pain and swelling present. Just me.

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answers from Boston on

My brother fell off of a short stone wall when we were kids. My mother, being the nervous type, brought him in for x-rays even though his ankle wasn't swollen and DID NOT hurt him. It turned out that he has a small fracture of the growth bone, (or maybe growth plate), and needed to have a cast. The Dr. said that if it had been left untreated, his leg would not have grown properly and would have been shorter than the other. I would recommend that even if she is not hurting that you have it x-rayed just to be sure.

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answers from Seattle on

I sprain and break my ankles all the time (breaks are preferable, btw, they heal faster... I sprain them 3 or 4 times a year, and break one every couple years... my tendons are all stretched out and torn to bits, nothing short of surgery will correct them, and it's a pretty huge "elective" surgery until I snap one or more all the way).

If she's sleeping, let her sleep. If she's okay tomorrow, stay home (since it's sunday), but if she's in a lot of pain head to the ER.

Appointment on Monday, regardless. If it IS a break (lucky, lucky... and I'm not joking; breaks are 6 weeks, sprains are 3-4 MONTHS)... go with the waterproof cast. Even if you have to call around to find a place that does them.

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answers from New York on

I had that kind of a mild sprain a few times as a kid. My grandparents were nurses and they just iced it for a few days and had me stay off it. it healed fin with no doctor visit. I had a worse sprain as an adult--I couldn't put weight on it for about 2 weeks (saw the doctor for that one). It makes sense for the doctor to check it out but if she can put weight on it it probably isn't severe.


I had that kind of a mild sprain a few times as a kid. My grandparents were nurses and they just iced it for a few days and had me stay off it. it healed fin with no doctor visit. I had a worse sprain as an adult--I couldn't put weight on it for about 2 weeks (saw the doctor for that one). It makes sense for the doctor to check it out but if she can put weight on it it probably isn't severe.



answers from New York on

My oldest fractured her growth plate in her ankle when she was in 3rd grade when she fell down stairs at shool & she is still dealing w/reprocusssions of it now going into the 8th grade. I would get it checked out at the E/R but still follow up w/a pediatric orthopedic just to be on the safe side. That is where we went wrong. X-rays only show bones, not all of the other good parts. She was sent home from the e/r w/an air cast & a clear x-ray. Not trying to scare you, but we have had 3 knee surgeries since and would hate to see any one have to go thru this (we just spent 4 hrs in the e/r last night w/what we thought was a dislocated knee cap) - best of luck to you and your daughter.



answers from Honolulu on

I really don't understand... why she was not taken to the Doctor or ER or Urgent Care office, already.

How old is she?

Also bear in mind, that depending on age, a child's foot injuries do need to be looked at, BECAUSE, children have "growth plates" in their feet etc., and sometimes in injury it can be affected and/or Damaged.
My daughter hurt her foot once, and IMMEDIATELY her Doctor took an X-ray in order to examine her growth-plates and it if got affected or damaged.
AND, even if it was not broken per say... she had to wear a cast. Because her foot was injured and she could not walk on it.
You NEED TO MAKE SURE... her Growth-Plate is not damaged.

Now, your child's foot is swollen.
That is enough of a reason to go to the Doctor.
Usually, when an injury is swollen, it means there is a fracture.

I would very much so, take her to the Doctor... or a hospital where they can take an x-ray right there.
If you go to the Pediatrician, unless they are a full service office, they will not have, an x-ray there and will then send you to the hospital anyway.



answers from Norfolk on

i'd wait. unless she cries and fusses about wanting to go. mine twisted hers this past june and two days later was all better. and she couldnt put her weight on it either. so if she can stand to wait then wait til mon or tues and see how shes doing. get her some crutches til then and ice it for 20 minutes at a time. (any longer wont do any good) you can get a cheap set of crutches at a thrift store.


answers from Washington DC on


Good morning!! How is your daughter today?

if she still can't put full weight on it - take her to the Urgent Care for Xrays...she could have a hairline break...you never know.



answers from Dallas on

There is no way of telling if it is broke or cracked without an x-ray. With that being said, I would wait and see how it does tomorrow. If it is still swollen and painfull I would take her in on Monday and have it checked out.



answers from Kansas City on

I would elevate it, even in bed if possible. Try and get it above her heart, which I know for a kid is hard b/c they'll just move it if they are uncomfortable, but at least try! You can stack a bunch of pillows or blankets underneath it. I'd also put ice on it every 3 hours or so if it still looks swollen. I'd probably wait until Monday but if she can't get through the day tomorrow b/c of the pain, then go ahead and take her in to the ER.



answers from Lafayette on

my dd sprains her ankle ALL the time. the ped said to bring her in if not better or getting worse after 2 days. call your on call ped tomorrow and get some advice. gl

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