When children are involved in sports, it is not only great for their growing bodies, which end up building strong muscles and a stronger cardiovascular system while maintaining a healthy weight, but it is also a wonderful activity for children’s minds and emotions. Playing on a sports team allows a child to experience a true sense of camaraderie with his or her teammates, and the activities that he or she participates in help boost much-needed self-esteem and self-confidence.
Despite all of the many benefits of having your child enrolled on a sports team of any kind, from tennis to baseball to football and more, you should also be aware that your child will also potentially injure himself or herself at any point during practice, a match, or during a longer tournament. By knowing what types of injuries are common to child athletes, you will have a better idea of what to expect and you will also know how to approach an injury situation with calm and resolve, rather than becoming overly worried and panicking.
Below are just a few of the most common injuries that child athletes who play on sports teams typically suffer from.
Contusions are more simply known as bruises. They are, by far, the most common sporting injury that child athletes will have to deal with, but they usually do not cause any major problems, unless they are particularly severe. Typically, those athletes in sports like football will suffer most from contusions because a contusion occurs when the body is hit with blunt force, such as a ball coming hard at the body from another player. The bruising that occurs is a result of underlying bleeding within the muscle or soft tissues of the injury site. When severe, a contusion turns into a haematoma, or a bulging area of skin from a collection of blood beneath. In all cases of contusion, the best remedy is to rest, apply ice, elevate the injured body part, and try stretching the area.
A sprain is defined as a tear, whether partial or complete, of a ligament anywhere in the body. Ligaments are found in joints, where they connect bones to one another. Some sprains produce pain, while others do not. Other typical symptoms are a “popping” sound, swelling, loss of mobility, and the feeling that the joint is loose or otherwise unstable. While not really common in the ligaments of young children, if your child exhibits these symptoms, have him examined by a doctor to make certain that everything is okay and the bones are fine as well.
Strains affect muscles and tendons, which attach muscles to bones throughout the body. When a strain occurs, the child has either partially or completely torn a muscle or tendon. Like sprains, these injuries are not as common in younger children as they are in older children. Symptoms, no matter how severe the strain, include pain. Rest is required for healing, but strains can be prevented by proper muscle conditioning, as well as warming up properly and stretching.
Jean Hargreaves is an expert in child health and safety. Jean often visits puddleducks.com when researching the latest and safest swimming activites for children.