Injured yourself? The principle of RICE is what we used to do for acute injuries like sprained ankles. The theory has changed and now we want to give our injuries some PEACE and LOVE! And we want to do no HARM
Initially in the 1-3 days of an acute injury - using the example of an ankle sprain:
P - Protect
E - Elevate
A - Avoid anti inflammatories
C - Compression
E - Educate and empower
We want to protect your injury, if thats using crutches, a brace, offloading it.
We want to elevate your injury so that blood comes back to the heart - so resting your ankle on a chair, or on the arm of your couch
We want to avoid anti inflammatories - this is probably the one that may trick a few people - the theory has changed here. The body has its own natural healing process if we did no intervention to the ankle, eventually it will get better. It naturally swells so that we don't walk on it and we don't move it too much... so why are we doing the opposite to the body? In early days, anti inflammatories can hinder healing.
Compression - using a compressive bandage, tubigrip, or compression stockings (or tights - depending where you have injured)
Educate and empower - we want YOU to know what to do to help YOURSELF!
And then after those first few days:
L - Load
O - Optimism
V - Vascularisation
E - Exercise
Load actively without increasing pain
Optimism and positive mindset for acute injuries has been shown to improve outcomes and return to movement faster. It helps the brain to stay realistic and recover well.
Vascularisation means pain free cardio exercise - for the ankle, lets go on an exercise bike!
Exercise to restore movement, mobility and strength pain free.
AND following this - we want to do no HARM in the initial 1-3 days:
H - Heat
A - Alcohol
M - Massage
Heat - our body is already swollen and hot naturally, we don't want to add a heat pack/sauna/deep heat creams to our inflamed ankle
Consuming alcohol increases blood flow. It can inhibit wound healing and increase chance of infection
Running or strenuous physical activity can aggravate an acute injury and potentially make it worse
Massage in the early days is to be avoided. You can see a healthcare practitioner in the early days, but they wont be directly massaging the area and they will be providing appropriate techniques to other areas to promote healing to your injury to get you to move well and return to sport faster