Swollen ankles are common and usually not a cause for concern if you lead an active lifestyle. But, what about when swollen ankles persist beyond periods of exercise and stay swollen, or worse yet, are accompanied by other symptoms? In these instances, swollen ankles could be a warning sign for deeper, more serious health issues.
Why Swollen Ankles Are An Early Warning Sign You Should Never Ignore
Why You Have Swollen Ankles
The causes of edema are far and wide, however, the majority of cases can be attributed to the following:
- Lymphedema (collection of lymphatic fluid in the tissues)
- Venous insufficiency (swollen ankles are an early symptom of venous insufficiency)
- Blood clots (clotted blood in the veins can stop the return of blood from the legs back up to the heart, causing swelling in the ankles and legs)
- Overusing laxatives or diuretics
- Heart, liver or kidney disease
- Medication side-effects
If the suspected cause for swollen ankles is more serious, for instance if you already have pre-existing heart or liver issues, it is important to seek out medication attention. While swollen ankles may seem harmless, they are often an important warning sign of further, deeper health problems that demand your short term attention.
What To Do About it
Beyond leading an active healthy lifestyle, filled with regular exercise and plenty of water, if symptoms still persist, try out any one of these 5 solutions – or better yet, a combination of them to maximize their powers.
Leg Elevation and Cold Compress
Put your leg up in front of you so it’s elevated and apply an ice pack to the swollen areas (or bag of wrapped ice in a towel). This is the fastest way to help control the swelling.
Place your feet and ankles in a bath of Epsom salt helps to rid the affected area of excess swelling, inflammation and pain. Draw of excess fluids and toxins with this simple remedy:
- Mix 2 cups of Epsom salt in warm bathwater and soak your feet and ankles for 10 to 15 minutes. Repeat up to 3 times a week.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Active ingredients in apple cider vinegar, including potassium, pectin and calcium, work together to tackle edema’s symptoms on all fronts. This vinegar’s minerals regulate your cells natural levels – when potassium levels fall in your body, there isn’t enough pressure generated to counterbalance the effects of other ions flooding water into your cell walls. This net inflow causes edema, to which, apple cider vinegar is great at counteracting!
- Mix 3 tablespoons of organic apple cider vinegar to 1 gallon of purified water. To improve the taste of this solution, you can add honey to taste! Shake the bottle before drinking.
- Make an apple cider vinegar wrap to alleviate inflammation and pain. Soak a towel in a picture of equal parts warm water and apple cider vinegar. Wrap the towel on the affected area for several minutes. Repeat throughout the day, as needed.
It has been proven that massaging your feet with warm mustard oil will help to relieve swelling and pain in the feet and ankles. Simply warm some in your palms and massage the area gently toward you heart – repeat as needed.
Molasses and Fennel Drink
Fennel seed‘s have strong diuretic powers, meaning that they naturally and effectively work to rid your body’s cells and tissues of excess accumulated fluid. Put it together with molasses’ recognized ability to relieve edema’s swelling and pain. Here’s a simple concoction to try out:
- Take about half tablespoon of molasses and one tablespoon of fennel seeds. Add them to 2 glass of water and boil it. When the quantity reduces to half, let it cool and then drink it. Drink the prepared solution about 2-3 times a day for a quick respite.
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