Three Common Sports Injuries And Their Treatments

If you're an active person, you're probably familiar with the fine line between muscle soreness and actual injury. Unfortunately, sports injuries are all too common. Some minor injuries will go away on their own with adequate rest, but others require medical treatment. A sports medicine doctor can provide the appropriate therapies to heal sports injuries. Here are three common athletic injuries and their treatments:

1. Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome

Patellofemoral pain syndrome is also known as knee pain or runner's knee. It's an injury that occurs when the tissue beneath your knee is inflamed or damaged. Overuse can cause this syndrome, which means long-distance runners commonly suffer from it. Poor form while performing weight-bearing exercises, such as squats, can also cause patellofemoral pain syndrome.

A sports medicine doctor will examine your knee to see if it's functioning properly. If your kneecap is slipping out of alignment during normal activities, the doctor may apply athletic tape to encourage your knee to stay in place. Your doctor may prescribe physical therapy to strengthen the muscles of your legs; improperly balanced muscles can sometimes tug the kneecap out of alignment. In serious cases, a steroid injection can relieve severe swelling.

2. Achilles Tendinitis

The Achilles tendon runs through the back of your heel. This tendon connects the muscles in your calf to your feet, and it's crucial for walking and running. Unfortunately, this tendon is also prone to overuse injuries. When the Achilles tendon becomes irritated and inflamed, it can cause chronic, severe pain when you walk or run.

If you present with Achilles tendinitis, a sports medicine doctor will recommend resting as much as possible. They may also prescribe an ankle brace, which will offer some support when you stand or walk. NSAIDs can reduce inflammation, encouraging healing. Your doctor may prescribe naproxen or a similar long-acting NSAID to control your pain and swelling.

3. Bone Fractures

While overuse injuries are among the most common, impact sports carry many additional risks. Contact sports, like football, can put players at risk of bone fractures. Bone fractures occur when excessive force is placed on a bone, causing it to crack. Broken bones can be extremely painful, and they must be treated immediately.

A sports medicine doctor can diagnose bone fractures using x-rays. If a fracture is discovered, they will reset and split the broken bone. They may apply a plaster cast to protect the bone as it heals. If you fracture a bone, it's critical that you listen to your doctor and avoid strenuous exercise until you have completely healed.

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