Sprains and Strains

Overview of Sprains and Strains

Sprains and Strains Meaning in Urdu

سپرین اور سٹرین میں عام طور پر فرق نہیں سمجھا جاتا، لیکن ان دونوں چوٹوں میں کافی فرق ہوتا ہے۔ سپرین ایسے ٹشوز کو متاثر کرتی ہے جو دو ہڈیوں کو ملاتے ہیں، جب کہ سٹرین ایسے ٹشوز کو متاثر کرتی ہے جو ہڈیوں سے جڑے ہوتے ہیں۔ سپرین اور سٹرین کی وجہ سے عام طور پر درد، سوزش، اور جِلد کی معمولی چوٹ کا سامنا کرنا پڑتا ہے۔ ماحولیاتی عںاصر، تھکاوٹ، اور کھیلوں کے دوران اچھے جوتے وغیرہ نہ استعمال کرنے سے بھی سپرین اور سٹرین کے خطرات میں اضافہ ہوتا ہے-

Sprains and strains, also known as (Moch ana aur Tanna/تاننا اور آنا موچ) are the inflammation of soft tissues, which includes ligaments, tendons, and muscles. Both are common injuries but affect different locations of the body. Any injury to a ligament (tissue that connects two or more bones at a joint) is called a sprain while a person feels any injury to muscles or tendons (fibrous cords of tissue that connect muscle to bone) is called strain. They can often be treated at home.

Signs and Symptoms of Sprains and Strains

Mostly, sprains and strains have overlapping symptoms. But the only difference between the sprains and strains is the affected site, the consequences of injury i.e. muscle spasm or joint bruising.

Although both sprains and strains have common symptoms. The only minor differences between them are mentioned in the table below:

Sprain Symptoms VS Strain Symptoms


Sprain symptoms

  Strain symptoms


Bruising around the joint

Muscle spasms 


Pain around the affected joint

Pain around the affected joint





Less flexibility

Less flexibility


Difficult to move joint

Difficult to move joint


Types of Sprains and Strains

Sprains and strains are classified into three main forms, depending on the severity are as follows:

1. Grade I (Mild): This type involves minute stretching of tissues. 

  • Minor swelling and pain, which is hardly observable
  • Mild loss of movement and upto 25% strength reduction.
  • Stability remains unaffected

2.Grade II (Moderate): In this type of strain muscle stretching is accompanied by minor tissue breakdown. 

  • Moderate swelling looks like a "baseball" size. It is also seen bruising.
  • Moderate loss of movement and strength reduction i.e. 25-75%.
  • A decrease in stability at lessening the extent 

3.Grade III (Severe): Thus third type involves the n this type a complete breakdown of tissues

  • Severe swelling and bruising, which is observable
  • Almost complete loss of movement and strength reduction i.e. 75 – 100%
  • Loss of stability to a greater extent

Types of Sprains and Strains classified as per injury location

Sprains and strains are both injuries but occurring at different locations. 

Generally, sprain makes the ligaments overstretched, torn, or twisted. The ligaments are surrounded by the joints and connect one bone to the other bones or cartilage. The main sprain areas of the body are:

  • Wrists
  • Ankles
  • Thumbs
  • Knees

In contrast to a sprain, strain occurs when muscles or tendons become overstretched, torn, or twisted. A tendon links the muscles to bones. Commonly strained areas of the body are:


  • Legs
  • Knees
  • Feet
  • Back

Causes of Sprains and Strains

Sprains occur due to falling, twisting, or any trauma to the joint. These types of injuries may cause tearing or stretching of ligaments, which makes the joint unable to move from its normal range. 

Factor Causing Sprains: 

  • Walking or running on a rough surface
  • Sudden twisting of the foot, knee, etc
  • Twisting of wrist or hand
  • Playing excessive sports such as  racquets, contact sports( football, basketball, etc) may cause injuries

Factor Causing Strains:

Strains that are either acute (occur unexpectedly) or chronic (produces slowly after some time)

  1. Causes of Acute Strain:

Here are some of the potential causes of acute strain:

  • Heavy objects lifting
  • Running
  • Jumping, or throwing
  • Slipping
  1. Causes of chronic strains:

Playing sports and activities that have repetitive movements of action, such as:


  • Rowing
  • Tennis 
  • Running
  • If an individual is in a sitting or standing position for a longer time may also cause chronic strains

Risk Factors of Sprains and Strains

People with sprains and strains have certain risk factors that increase the overstretching of a joint including:

  1. Twisted Muscles and Joints:  These twisted joints and muscles lose their strength and can’t support the person’s movements.

  2. Heavy Pieces of Equipment: Excessive usage of heavy equipment may have a risk of sprains and strains.

  3. Not Warming Up: It is necessary to warm up and cool down after vigorous exercise or athletic activity to prevent injuries. Normally, warming up is important for stretching the muscles and increasing motion activities. A cool-down gives strengthening to the muscles for better joint support.

  4. Feeling Lethargy: If an individual is feeling tired or lethargic, he/she may need proper rest for healing of muscles and joints.

  5. Environmental Factors: Being aware of walking on wet, slippery, or icy surfaces can increase the risk of severe injury.





An orthopedic doctor or general physician will firstly do a physical examination of the patients and ask the questions to know about the causes and symptoms. After a brief examination, they will suggest imagining diagnostics:

  • X-Rays: It is used to visualize cracked or fractured areas.
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging):  It provides a more detailed view of the joint than an X-ray. An MRI scan can easily reveal the small or thin cracks of the joints that X-ray can't detect.

Treatment of Sprains and Strains | When to Consult a Doctor

Some of the popular treatment options for sprains and strains include:

First aid for sprains and strains:

People experiencing acute strains and sprains are using the first aid technique known as RICE, for its proper healing treatment.  RICE stands for:

  • Rest: Do not move the affected joint and take proper rest to ensure healing.
  • Ice: By using ice packs on the damaged joints to reduce the swelling and inflammation. Do not use ice directly on the skin, but always make a bag of ice. Put the ice bag on the affected area for 20 minutes and repeat it every 24 to 48 hours.
  • Compression:  Compress the affected joints through the trainer's tape or bandage to reduce swelling.  Do not wrap it tightly because it can reduce the blood supply.
  • Elevation: It helps to reduce pain by placing joints at a higher level of the heart. If elevation to this extent seems difficult, then retain joint position parallel to your heart. 

This RICE technique is applied for the first 24 to 48 hours after the injury; it keeps the person more comfortable and reduces the signs and symptoms.

If the external injury is chronic then a doctor may recommend the surgery to the patients. It is required to repair damaged or torn ligaments, tendons, or muscles. 

In case of sprain and strain, consult a medical professional as soon as possible.