SCHOOL SPORTS INJURY PREVENTION
August 08, 2012 at 1:39 PM
August does not only signal a return to school, but a return to sports. Football, Volleyball, Cross Country and Soccer are just a few of the sports seasons that will take place over the course of this school semester and along with those sports comes an array of potential injures. This can cause fear and stress for everyone involved in sports from organizers, coaches, parents and the athletes themselves.
So, who is the most at-risk for these injuries? How can they be prevented? What are the most common injuries? When should you go see a doctor, or is it a problem you can take care of yourself?
Typically, it does not matter which sport is being played- whether it is a contact sport such as football, or a non-contact sport such as tennis, children are the most susceptible to injury. Kids between 5 and 14 years of age account for as much as 40 percent of all sports-related injuries because they have a slower reaction time and they're coordination isn't fully developed yet. In addition, overuse of a muscle or joint is also very common amongst kids. In baseball, kids can suffer shoulder, elbow and wrist injuries from repeatedly throwing a ball too much. Shin splints occur from running too much, not wearing the correct footwear, or training too hard.
Pull, Tear and Strain: These are injuries that occur to a muscle or a tendon that connects muscles to bones. It varies from an overstretch to a complete tear. The best ways to treat these ailments is to ice, heat, rest, light stretching, and anti-inflammatory medication.
Fractures: There are several types of fractures. Simple- broken in one place, Comminuted- broken in two or more places, and Stress- a small crack from overload and overuse. Symptoms are an out of place limb, swelling, bruising, bleeding, intense pain, numbness, and limited mobility. Common sports fractures include broken clavicles, wrists, ankles, arms and legs.
Blisters: These occur from friction of skin on equipment or clothing. The friction causes the skin to separate between its layers and fluid fills the gap. Most blisters will show on the athletes feet so wearing the appropriate footwear is essential to prevention.
Muscle Soreness: This soreness can occur 24-48 hours after you exercised. Typically the pain felt is a result from over exertion or it is your body adapting to a new exercise. The best way to combat soreness is to drink plenty of water, get plenty of rest, stretch, and use the correct dosage of ant-inflammatories such as Aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen. These will only relieve the soreness, it will not speed the healing process.
Tendonitis: This is a very common overuse injury. It is a deep pain caused by inflammation of the tendons.
Concussions: Concussions are a very serious issue that can occur in high-contact sports such as hockey and football, but are not strange to other sports like baseball, softball, soccer, volleyball and more. A concussion occurs when the brain is jarred from an impact or violent movement. Early signs and symptoms include confusion, disorientation, memory loss, unconsciousness, unequal size pupils, headache, dizziness, tinnitus, nausea, vomiting, and vision changes. It is very important to see a licensed physician when a concussion occurs because there can be some serious long-term affects.
It is very easy to prevent many of these injuries from occurring. Remember, it is always important to wear the correct gear and use the right equipment such as shin guards, helmets and eye wear. For kids especially, make sure everyone is at the same playing level. Playing outside of their skill, size, and development level increase their risk of injury. Hydrate. Hydration actually needs to begin 24 hours before the athletic event. Simply drinking water while you are playing is not enough. It is also important to rehydrate once the game is over. This can help reduce muscle soreness. Finally, be sure to rest. It is very important to take a couple of days off every week in order to let your body heal and recover. Resting regularly and getting enough sleep will help prevent overuse-type injuries. Being educated and informed is always key to preventing any type of injury.
Best Docs Network features an array of doctors that can help with your sport injury needs:
Category: Bone & Joint Health
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