Playing sports is fun and exciting, but it does stress the body. As a result, just about every body part, from the head to the feet, can be injured. The good news is that these injuries can be healed, and the athlete can often go back to their favorite sport after a period of treatment and rest. Here are some common sports injuries and how to treat them:
This is also called a groin strain and happens when one or more of the five adductor muscles in the inner thigh is overstretched or torn. Often, a groin strain heals within a month to a month and a half if the patient rests. If the doctor diagnoses a mild to moderate strain, they’ll prescribe pain medication and refer the person to a physical therapist who may teach them how to gently stretch the muscles of their lower body and perform exercises to strengthen their core.
Ankle sprains are some of the most common sports injuries. The most common sprain happens when the ankle turns over so much that the sole of the person’s foot faces inward. A person who has sprained their ankle should perform the RICE procedure. This means they rest, ice their ankle, compress it, and elevate it. A mild to moderate ankle strain can heal after a few weeks if the patient uses crutches, but if the sprain is severe, it may take three months to heal, and the person may need physical therapy. If the ligament is ruptured, surgery may be needed to repair it. After surgery, the patient’s ankle is put in a brace, and they’ll need to use crutches for about a month.
Rotator Cuff Injuries
The rotator cuff is made up of tendons and muscles that wrap around the upper arm bone and keep the shoulder stable. Rotator cuff sports injuries are caused by sudden overhead actions of the arm and can be the result of years of stress to the arm and shoulder. A rotator cuff injury should respond to the RICE method. If it doesn’t, the doctor can prescribe pain medicines, recommend rest for the shoulder and administer corticosteroid injections to reduce inflammation. A physical therapist can teach the patient shoulder-strengthening exercises such as scapular clocks and resistance exercises.
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