Why Does Your Ankle Get Sore After Running?

After you run, does your ankle often feel sore? The soreness may last an hour or two, or it might perpetuate for days. Often, this ankle soreness is a sign of a more serious, ongoing injury or ailment. It's wise to see a foot and ankle doctor. They can do some testing and look you over. Chances are, they'll find out that one of the following issues is at fault.

Tibial Anterior Tendinitis

Is the pain focused around the front of your ankle? It might feel worse when you bend your foot back. This type of pain is often due to tibial anterior tendinitis, which is a swelling of the tendons in this area. It's a common injury in runners who ramp up their mileage too quickly. If caught early, you can typically treat it with rest, ice, and perhaps an ankle stabilizing bandage. In more serious cases, your doctor may recommend cortisone injections in the tendon.

Peroneal Tendinitis

Another tendon in the ankle that sometimes becomes irritated by running is the peroneal tendon. This tendon runs down the outside of your ankle. It connects your shin bone to the bone that protrudes from the side of your ankle. If your doctor finds that you have peroneal tendinitis, they may recommend taking some time off, changing your shoes, and sticking to running on softer surfaces for a while.

Ankle Arthritis

There's a chance that the soreness you are feeling is the start of ankle arthritis. This is a condition in which the cartilage that lines the joint begins to wear away, leading to inflammation and pain in the joint. There is no actual cure for ankle arthritis. However, your doctor can give you ways to manage it so that it bothers you less when you run. They may recommend anti-inflammatory medications, exercises to loosen the joint, and supplements to increase the amount of joint-lubricating fluids your ankle releases.

Stress Fracture

Sometimes, runners develop tiny, hairline fractures in a bone after periods of heavy training. Usually, this pain comes on suddenly. It might be especially painful when you press on a certain part of your ankle. For stress fractures, the treatment is usually some time off, followed by switching to more padded shoes, running on softer surfaces, and ramping up training more slowly.

If your ankle gets sore after running, make sure you see a doctor who specializes in treating foot and ankle problems. Getting a diagnosis ensures that you treat the injury the right way.

For more information, reach out to a foot and ankle doctor in your area.