- As soon as possible after an injury, experts recommend using the RICE method:
Rest – keep the injured area supported and avoid using for 48-72 hours.
Ice – apply ice to the injured area for 20 minutes every two hours for the first 48-72 hours.
Compression – apply a firm elastic bandage over the area, extending above and below the painful site.
Elevation – raise the injured area above the level of the heart at all times.
- Referral – as soon as possible, visit a qualified healthcare professional.
- Do not use heat because that increases bleeding.
- Do not drink alcohol because it increases bleeding and swelling.
- Do not run, because running or exercise increases blood flow and delays healing.
- Do not massage the injury because that will increase swelling and bleeding, and also delays healing.