Although the ankles are about as far away from the spine as you can get, ankle pain CAN be associated with chiropractic issues, particularly if there are problems with the alignment or function of the lower spine, pelvis, or lower extremities. As chiropractors, we focus on diagnosing and treating musculoskeletal issues, and so we may be able to help with ankle pain in certain cases. Here are some potential causes of ankle pain associated with chiropractic issues:
- Misalignments of the vertebrae in the spine: When the lower spine or pelvis is misaligned, it can affect the alignment of the lower extremities, including the ankles. Chiropractors can use spinal adjustments to correct these misalignments, which may help alleviate ankle pain.
- Gait and posture problems: Poor posture and an abnormal gait can put excessive stress on the ankles and surrounding muscles and ligaments, leading to pain. Chiropractors can assess and correct posture and gait issues to reduce the strain on the ankles.
- Muscle imbalances: Muscular imbalances in the lower back, pelvis, or legs can affect how weight is distributed on the ankles, potentially leading to pain. Chiropractors can work on muscle balance and recommend exercises to strengthen weak muscles and stretch tight ones.
- Nerve compression: Sometimes, nerve compression in the lower back can lead to referred pain in the ankles. Chiropractic adjustments may help relieve nerve compression and reduce ankle pain.
- Overuse or strain injuries: Repetitive stress or strain on the lower back or pelvis can radiate pain to the ankles. Chiropractors can provide adjustments, as well as advice on ergonomics and lifestyle modifications, to address these issues.
- Pelvic misalignment: A misaligned pelvis can affect the biomechanics of the entire lower body, potentially leading to ankle pain. Chiropractors can adjust the pelvis to restore proper alignment.
- Leg length discrepancy: An anatomical or functional leg length discrepancy can cause problems with gait and posture, leading to ankle pain. Chiropractors can assess leg length and recommend appropriate interventions, such as orthotics or adjustments.
However, even if you are unsure about whether your ankle pain is a chiropractic issue, a good chiropractor should be able to detect whether your ankle pain is coming from any of the above causes, or if there is another underlying condition, in which case they would refer you to seek further examination, possibly with a podiatrist or orthopaedic surgeon.
A chiropractic examination can be a good first step to finding out exactly what is causing your ankle pain. If you are suffering from ankle pain, please call Golden Spines Chiropractic on 02 9412 2722 for a free 10-minute phone consultation with Dr Chana to find out what is your next best step.