Sports have long been a fantastic way to stay healthy while also bonding with friends. If you’ve ever been involved in any kind of sporting event, you know how intense and satisfying playing a game can be. You also know that injuries go hand in hand with any type of sport.
At Alpha Orthopedics, our professional surgeons are ready to help get you back on your feet after a sports-related injury. Whether it’s conservative treatment or surgery, our team will treat your injury safely and efficiently.
Types of sports-related injuries
Any type of injury that you may sustain during a sporting event can cause you pain and leave you on the sidelines. Getting hurt isn’t something to take lightly, so knowing about common injuries can save you a lot of grief later on. Some of the most common types of sports injuries include:
- ACL tears
- Rotator cuff tears
These injuries are usually acute in nature, so if you feel yourself get hurt make sure to stop playing immediately and seek medical care as soon as you can. This will lessen the chance of worsening the injury.
Your treatment options will depend on what is injured and the overall severity of your injury. You may be able to treat yourself at home, or you may need the expert care of our surgeons at Alpha Orthopedics.
At-home treatment options
A lot of sports-related injuries involve the muscles being strained or pulled. This type of trauma to the muscle can cause a lot of pain, swelling, and bruising. Although it may look really bad, it can usually be managed at home with conservative treatment.
One of the best ways to start the healing process is to follow the R.I.C.E protocol. This stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Rest begins the healing process, allowing your injured muscles to relax and begin to repair themselves. The first few days after the initial injury are when you want to avoid any strenuous activity that may worsen the already hurt muscle.
Ice is best on the first day or two after your injury occurred. This treatment reduces the amount of swelling at the site and also can help decrease pain by restricting blood flow to the area. Never put the ice directly on your skin and use it for about 20 minutes at a time, several times a day.
Compression also helps reduce swelling and also decreases excess fluid around the injury. You can use the compression bandage with the ice for the first few days. The bandage can also help somewhat immobilize the area, reminding you to take it easy on the injury.
Elevation can help relieve the pain associated with swelling around the injury but decreasing fluid buildup. Keeping the injury at the level of your heart or above is a great way to get some relief from your pain.
If you’re still having some discomfort, you may want to try over the counter anti-inflammatory medications for relief. Heat can be used on the injury after the first three days. You can then alternate heat and ice for relief.
When you should see a doctor
While many sports-related injuries can be treated conservatively or at home, your injury may be more severe in nature and require a trip to see our doctors. There are several reasons you may need to be seen by our doctors, including:
- Severe swelling
- Intense pain
- Obvious visible deformity
- Popping or cracking sounds
- Inability to put weight on the injury
If you’ve tried doing conservative treatments at home without relief after several days, it’s probably a good idea to be seen by one of our doctors. In some cases, your injury may require surgery to fully heal correctly. Many of these surgical procedures offer minimally invasive techniques that can decrease your recovery time and get you back on your game as soon as possible.
If a sports injury is keeping you benched, call us at one of our three locations in Texas, or schedule a consultation online today.