Acute orthopaedic injuries sustained while playing sports are very common. Although some are unavoidable as they can happen as a result of sudden accidents, there are still some things you can do to minimise such occurrences.
In this article, we will be sharing more about the tips for preventing and treating orthopaedic injuries in sports. Read on to find out more.
Preventing orthopaedic injuries in sports
Always warm up and stretch
Warming up and completing simple stretches before you exercise or participate in sports can help to prevent an orthopaedic injury. This indispensable step prepares your body for more strenuous activity by increasing your flexibility, promoting blood and oxygen circulation, reducing muscle tension, and giving you a wider range of motion.
Wear the right gear
It is important to wear the right gear before participating in any kind of sports, especially in contact sports like basketball and football where the chances of colliding with another player and sustaining an injury are higher. For instance, ankle guards or braces are some examples of gear recommended by foot and ankle specialists to reduce the blow in the event of an accident.
Take breaks when needed
It is advisable to take breaks whenever it is needed to prevent pushing your body past its limits which will only do more harm than good. Having adequate rest in between exercises or games will allow your muscles time to regain strength and your body to recover from fatigue. Performing activities and sports when your body feels ready may be helpful in avoiding orthopaedic injuries.
Do not play through the pain
Never ignore dull aches and continue playing sports through the pain just because they do not seem like a big deal. In fact, you would most probably have sustained a minor injury which can exacerbate if you continue straining it. It is recommended that you utilise the RICE method – Rest the injured limb, Ice the affected area, Compress with an elastic wrap or bandage, and Elevate the injured limb to prevent swelling. Remember to seek treatment at an orthopaedic clinic in Singapore early to prevent your condition from worsening.
Treating orthopaedic injuries in sports
Know the common orthopaedic injuries in sports
Understanding the common orthopaedic injuries that can occur while playing sports will be useful in helping you to ascertain the next steps to take. Some common acute orthopaedic injuries include a sprained ankle, ACL tear, rotator cuff tear, meniscus tear, tennis elbow and stress fracture. The non-surgical and surgical treatment methods for these injuries differ, hence, it is always recommended to seek professional medical advice by visiting an orthopaedic clinic. Non-surgical treatments range from physiotherapy to injections while surgical treatments can involve keyhole procedures.
Look out for signs and symptoms
One of the tell-tale signs that you have sustained an orthopaedic injury is feeling pain in the affected area. Other symptoms include swelling, tenderness, bruising, numbness, bone deformity and a limited range of motion. In more severe cases, patients may not be able to bear weight on the affected limb too, especially if a dislocation or fracture has occurred.
Seek prompt treatment
Instead of heading to the ER and waiting hours before someone attends to you, consider visiting a specialist orthopaedic clinic instead. Same-day appointments are usually permitted for urgent cases so that patients do not have to wait longer than needed to seek treatment. This also means getting an accurate diagnosis for your condition and receiving prompt treatment, regardless of whether it is non-surgical or surgical. Simple investigations that the orthopaedic specialist will perform include x-rays or an MRI scan which can be arranged on the same day. Keep in mind that early treatment goes a long way in helping you to regain your quality of life.
Understand the treatments available
Some non-surgical treatment methods may help to relieve symptoms if your injury is mild. They include taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications and doing physical therapy exercises to strengthen your muscles and help you regain a full range of motion. Alternatively, an easy way to relieve symptoms in the comfort of your own home is the RICE method – rest, ice, compress and elevate.
If your symptoms do not improve, it is recommended to seek treatment at an orthopaedic clinic. The orthopaedic surgeon may suggest surgery if conservative treatments prove to be ineffective. The type of surgery depends on the injury sustained and the severity of your condition too.
It is advisable to seek prompt medical attention the moment you suspect you are suffering from an orthopaedic injury. This is crucial in helping to relieve symptoms and for you to bounce back to form, especially if you are an athlete, as soon as possible.