Exercise is an important part of life, and it's a vital tool to rely on if you want to remain healthy. However, for people with severe ankle degeneration due to arthritis — exercise is impossible. In addition to improving your ability to simply walk around, a total ankle replacement can help you re-invite exercise back into your life.
Whenever a person has significant ankle discomfort, there is a tendency to favor the ankle that hurts the least. This favoritism typically leads to balance issues. In this instance, even if the pain is manageable, the lack of coordination that arises when you favor one side over the other can make it too difficult to exercise.
A lack of balance increases the risk of a fall, which can intensify your injuries. Restoring the weaker ankle ensures that you are able to evenly distribute your weight going forward, which means you can balance better.
2. Pain Management
One of the greatest hurdles people with ankle degeneration experience is severe pain. Pain that is so severe that the idea of simply walking around seems impossible, let alone exercising. A total ankle replacement is a process that replaces the damaged joint in the ankle to, in effect, rebuild or restructure the damaged and weakened area.
As a result, the pain and soreness that you once experienced will be significantly reduced, if not completely eliminated, so that exercising is no longer a painful experience. You will likely also be able to stop using pain medication after the procedure.
Exercise requires movement, more specifically, fluid movement. However, if you have ankle degeneration due to arthritis, you generally can't move the area enough to perform exercises such as walking or cycling. Much of this concern can be blamed on the joints.
The joints are an important part of the ankle. Not only do the joints help support the ankle, but they also ensure you have a full range of motion in your ankle. Since a total replacement surgery involves rebuilding the joints, you can expect your range of motion to return to its pre-arthritis level, or at the least, very close to it.
If you have a desire to be active again, but you have serious ankle degeneration or damage, you should speak with a podiatrist. A medical professional can help you determine if a total ankle replacement is right for you and help you move forward with the procedure.
Walking is simple, right? You just put one foot in front of the other. This can be harder than it sounds if your feet are sore or plagued by ailments like bunions, hammertoe, or plantar fasciitis. If you've ever struggled to simply put one foot in front of the other, you're familiar with this unique pain and frustration. Thankfully, podiatrists have solutions for most common foot ailments. In the articles we've collected here, you can learn all about those solutions, and also about podiatrists in general. We hope that by being more informed, you can take a more preventative approach to foot care also also know what to expect when you seek treatment.