Posts for tag: Sports Injuries
Your child's sports injury can be treated just as your injury was. Or, can it? Your pediatrician knows that a child's body is still developing, responding differently to acute and overuse injuries from organized sports, gym class, and more. As such, he or she can help your child avoid injury and in the event of sprain, strain, laceration, dislocation, or head injury, will help your youngster recover and stay healthy.
Kids sports injuries
They're very common, says the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine. Annually, 3.5 million American children under the age of 14 suffer significant sports injuries. Some injuries are related to poor conditioning. Others occur because of inadequate instruction or proper protective gear such as padding, eye wear, sneakers, dance shoes, skates, and cleats.
In addition, diligent supervision on the part of parents, coaches, teachers, and other well-informed adults is critical to safe play. Well-maintained game fields and indoor surfaces avoid foot, ankle, and knee injuries.
Finally, KidsHealth reports that Pre-participation Physicals review medical histories and spot possible weaknesses in children's physiology and anatomy. Most school and organized sports teams require these check-ups either with the school physician or the family pediatrician before the sports season commences.
Treating sports injuries
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that proper assessment and prompt treatment of kids' sports injuries prevent long-term problems, including pain and proper growth of areas of the body such as the long bones. Traditionally, coaches and parents have used the RICE protocol to stabilize and injury, relieve pain, and begin the healing process. It still works exceptionally well. RICE stands for:
- Ice to the affected area
- Compression with an elastic bandage
- Elevation of the affected limb/injured area above heart level
Then, your pediatrician and other health care providers can devise a specific treatment plan to include physical therapy, strengthening exercises, over the counter analgesics, braces, and casts as needed. As a parent, you know your child well. So be sure to fully participate in your youngster's care plan.
Be safe, be well
Each child responds differently to athletic training depending on his or her gender, size, age, physical conditioning, underlying health issue,s and natural ability. You and your pediatrician can partner together in encouraging a safe sports season for your child. That's a win-win situation.
Even though you try as hard as possible to keep your child safe while they are playing sports, accidents still happen. At these moments, it’s important that you know whether these are injuries that can easily be treated from the comfort of your own home or whether you need to turn to a pediatrician for proper medical attention.
Pediatricians have seen a lot of sports-related injuries over the years and while we also focus as much of our attention on prevention, we know the importance of being able to get immediate and comprehensive care when your child does sustain an injury.
Common sports-related injuries include:
- Dislocations (particularly in the shoulder)
- Traumatic injuries (this includes cuts, sprains and strains, and broken bones)
- Stress fractures
- Tendinitis (often in the hand or wrist)
When a dislocation happens many times it is accompanied by an audible popping sound at the moment that the injury occurred. This unnerving sound is often followed by sudden and intense pain. It’s important that you turn to a pediatrician who can put the shoulder or any other area of the body back in place. The joints of a child’s body are looser than adults, so it makes shoulders and other areas more prone to dislocations.
Minor cuts, sprains, and strains can often be handled with at-home care. In most cases, the RICE method is a great way to ensure that your child gets the rest they need to heal properly and to stay off of the injury until it fully heals. Icing and elevating the injured area can also reduce pain and swelling. Of course, if you suspect that your child has a broken bone, this will need to be evaluated by a medical professional right away.
Children who are serious or long-term athletes are more likely to experience overuse injuries. These injuries occur over time rather than suddenly and they are often the result of performing repetitive movements. Overuse injuries include stress fractures and tendinitis. If your child feels pain whenever they move a certain area of the body or if they notice pain or swelling in a certain area it’s important that they get checked out.
Wearing a helmet is crucial for protecting your child’s head while playing sports. Of course, if your child has received a blow to the head and is experiencing dizziness, fatigue, frequent or severe headaches or just seems out of sorts it’s crucial that you bring them in right away to see if they’ve incurred a concussion.
When in doubt, pick up the phone and talk to a pediatrician about your child’s injuries and symptoms. They will be able to determine whether or not they should come in for proper care.
No parent wants a child hurt during gym class or a ball game. However, the fact is that 2.6 million children go to hospital emergency rooms every year in the United States because of sports injuries, says the National Institute of Arthritis & Musculoskeletal & Skin Diseases. What can you do to prevent these problems, and how can your pediatrician at 7 Days Pediatrics in Edison and South Plainfield, NJ and serving Fords and Perth Amboy, and Woodbridge help? Read how here.
What are the most common injuries?
Children engage in all kinds of physical activities these days--both in and out of school. Baseball, soccer, martial arts, football, and cheer leading are just a few. They result in a wide range of acute and many times chronic injuries to the head, chest and upper and lower extremities, the most common of which is the ankle sprain.
Other injuries your team pediatricians in Edison and South Plainfield, NJ and serving Fords and Perth Amboy, and Woodbridge see are:
- Lacerations and bruises
- Buckle fractures, affecting the long bones of the arms and legs
- Fractures of the fingers and toes
- Heat exhaustion
- Sun burns
- Back injuries
- Growth plate injuries of the long bones
- Tooth avulsion and tooth fracture
Your children's doctor plays an important role in assessing, stabilizing and treating these injuries. The pediatrician teaches youngsters and parents the basics of staying safe while playing contact and non-contact sports alike.
First aid for sudden injuries
The team at 7 Day Pediatrics wants youngsters, parents, coaches and teachers to know the basics of first aid. Say, for example, a child goes down with a twisted ankle during a basketball game. Would you know what to do? Simply employ RICE:
- Rest--that is, stay off the ankle as much as possible
- Ice--20 minutes on and 20 minutes off
- Compression--with an elastic bandage
- Elevation--of the leg above the heart
RICE controls swelling and provides comfort for a sprained ankle. Then, contact the doctor's office.
Additionally, your pediatrician provides sports physicals for school and town teams and tells children and teens the importance of staying active, eating a healthy diet and staying hydrated.
Prevention is key to an active lifestyle at any age. Regarding sports, your children's doctor stresses:
- Good physical conditioning before starting a sport
- Adequate hydration
- Sunscreen application for summer sports
- Wearing protective gear such as batting helmets, mouthguards and properly fitting shoes
- Knowing how to use sporting equipment
- Warming up and stretching
When something happens...
If an injury is life-threatening, get to the nearest hospital ER immediately. For less severe problems, please contact 7 Days Pediatrics in Edison and South Plainfield, NJ for compassionate and accurate advice and a same-day appointment if needed. We are open seven days a week and are proud to serve the families in and around Fords, Perth Amboy and Woodbridge. For all our locations, call (732) 548-3210 and our fax number is (732) 906-3966.