Injuries are all but inevitable in sports. They are so common, in fact, that we have names for them like ‘tennis elbow’ and ‘runner’s knee’.
Sports injuries come in all shapes and sizes – keeping an athlete on the bench for a day or two, ending their career, or anywhere in between.
Although most sports injuries are the result of overuse, there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to treating athletic injuries. Treatment depends on the severity and location.
There are certain preventative measures that can be taken in order to reduce the risk of injury while exercising:
- It is important to warm up before engaging in athletic activity and to cool down after
- Stretching regularly can improve muscle flexibility, which reduces the risk of sprains and strains
- Start slow – doing too much too fast can result in injury
- Listen to your coach – work with a coach or trainer to make sure your form is correct
Many minor injuries, such as sprains and strains, do not require care from a medical professional. Athletes with these types of injuries commonly feel relief with painkillers such as Advil, and PRICE therapy, which consists of:
- Protect – support the injury with a brace or wrap
- Rest/Restrict – take some time off to keep the injury from worsening
- Ice – ice helps with inflammation and swelling. Use ice for 20 minutes every two hours for two days
- Compression – reduce swelling by providing compression with an elastic bandage
- Elevate – if possible, keep the injured area elevated above the heart to reduce swelling
If you do not feel relief with PRICE therapy within a few days, take it as a sign that medical attention is necessary. More serious sports-related injuries may require care from specialists such as a physical therapist.
Treatment options for more severe injuries may include:
- Corticosteroid Injections – if you have a persistent joint or tendon injury, your doctor might suggest an injection to reduce inflammation
- Physical Therapy – this treatment uses massage, strengthening exercises, and heat treatments to heal injured muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones
- Regenerative Medicine – regenerative medicine, such as stem cell treatment, encourages the regrowth of healthy cartilage and tendon cells
- Surgery – in extreme cases, surgery on the injured area may be necessary
Instant Urgent Care provides high-quality health care services to the Silicon Valley region. Our four state-of-the-art facilities, located in Santa Clara, San Jose, Palo Alto, and Sunnyvale, are staffed with fully-qualified and caring medical professionals whose top priorities are your health and satisfaction.
For more information about our sports injury treatment, please call us at 408-687-4806.