Most Common Recreational Injuries and How to Treat Them

Back Pain
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Playing sports is fun and there are millions of people who run, skate, or shoot hoops every day. However, both professional athletes and amateurs are susceptible to injuries that can end their careers. If you are ready to learn more about the most common recreational injuries, you will have better chances of avoiding them and treating them properly, so they don’t leave a permanent mark.

Spraining your ankle

By far, the most common injury that happens to children and adults alike is a sprained ankle. There isn’t a child who hasn’t sprained their ankle while jumping, as landing awkwardly means you will twist your ankle in an unnatural manner.

Nearly every sport that involves running is risky, as you can easily sprain the ligaments in your ankle or another joint. Because of the stress, the area around the ligament swells, so the only remedy is to rest and avoid physical activity, walking included, for the next couple of weeks.

Provided you haven’t broken a bone or dislocated the joint, the pain shouldn’t be that strong, although you can always take pain killers. Ice and elevation are the solutions for the swelling but even if you remain still, expect the full recovery to last several months.

Hurting your knee

If you have seen a footballer roll on the grass holding their knee, then you know that a knee injury is quite painful. Apart from football, knee injuries are common in basketball and volleyball, i.e. sports that involve a lot of jumping.

Over time, the knee joint weakens and becomes susceptible to injury. The number of repetitive blows the knee can take is limited, so after a while athletes start experiencing chronic pain. The worst thing about knee injuries is that you can easily aggravate an old knee injury if you receive a blow in the same spot.

Straining your back

Seniors aren’t the only ones holding their back in pain, as a strain can occur to runners as well. If you overuse certain muscles or you use them in an improper way for an extended period, then you can strain your back.

Back pain often prevents sports enthusiasts from functioning normally, as opening the fridge door can prove to be painful. Luckily, any good sports podiatry clinic has recovery programs that can help you get back in shape quicker and alleviate the pain. Back injuries can be prevented through warm-ups and stretches.

Bone fractures

When you sprain a muscle, the doctor always hopes that you haven’t fractured a bone. However, when a fracture does occur, the recovery process is prolonged by weeks or months. Essentially, a fracture is when a bone breaks, whether partially or completely. A fracture is very painful and the only way for it to heal is to wear a cast and rest the injured limb as much as possible.

Split shins

If you have been running repeatedly or made an abrupt change in your leg workout routine, then you might experience resonant pain coming from the shins. Essentially, when you try to run too fast or too long, the stress will be reflected through a pain in the shins.

On the positive side, a shin split goes away on its own after a couple of days or weeks, at worse. You can always speed up the recovery by using the methods listed several times: RICE (rest, ice, compression, and elevation). As you become stronger in the lower boy section, split shins will soon become a thing of the past.

A dental injury

Chipping a tooth might not be high on your list of sports injuries but all forms of dental injuries are quite common in sports. From another player's shoulder hitting your mouth to a direct hit by a ball, the danger of a dental injury is ever-present.

The worst thing that can happen is that an athlete loses a tooth or even worse, several teeth. For amateurs, running is by far the biggest danger of knocking out a tooth when you run too fast and land face down in the dirt.

Sciatica

We’ve already mentioned back strains but when the sciatic nerve located in the lower back gets pinched, it’s a completely different type of injury. The pain is intense and it radiates from the lower back down to the legs, most often affecting only one side of your body.

Apart from pinching, the sciatica nerve can be damaged by applying excessive pressure, such as suffering a strong blow, such as the ones seen in rugby or the NFL. This sort of injury is, luckily, only temporary, and in the majority of cases, there is no need for the patient to undergo surgery. 

Whether you’re an amateur athlete that likes to jog through the park on the weekends or a professional who lives off his/her athletic performance, sports injuries won’t bypass you. Depending on the type of physical activity, you may split your shins or sprain an ankle but knowing the correct recovery procedure will help you get back into shape faster.

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