Sprains & Strains


Sprains & Strains

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What are Sprains & Strains?

According to the Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation, sprains and strains are injuries to the body’s soft tissue. The injuries sound alike and are often mistaken for one another.

A sprain is an injury involving the stretching or tearing of a ligament (the tough bands of connective tissue between bones that meet at a joint).

A strain is an injury to a muscle (provides power to move a joint) or a tendon (attaches muscle to bone), ranging in severity from mild overstretching of tissue fibres, to partial or complete tears.

Symptoms of Sprains & Strains:

These injuries are similar, and in mild cases, there may be little pain or bruising. In more serious cases, you may hear an audible “pop”  from the stressed joint, you may find it extremely painful or difficult to use the affected joint, and there may be prominent swelling and bruising.

Who’s at Risk for Sprains & Strains?

Individuals who play contact sports or participate in activities that put stress on particular joints and muscle groups are at risk for sprains or strains.


Strengthening the muscle groups around the joints that receive the highest strain can help to prevent or lessen the seriousness of a strain or sprain injury.

Treatment Options:

To relieve swelling and pain, remember RICE: Rest the injured joint; Ice the injury; Compress the joint with an elastic bandage to provide support; and Elevate the injury.
If the pain persists or the joint has become unstable (cannot bear weight or move the joint normally), consult a medical professional.

Almost all forms of strain or sprain require rehabilitation to return to injured joint to full functional capacity. Ask Dr. Strong how he an his team can help you to regain full range of motion and live pain-free, following your strain or sprain.