How To Treat Sports Injuries
In order to effectively treat a sports injury, it needs to be acknowledged as being either major or minor. Once identified there are numerous ways to treat the area. The following article will highlight these different options.
If it has been decided that an injury does not require medical treatment, RICE therapy can be applied.
RICE can be broken down into the following sub headings:
- Rest: try to avoid regular exercise and dramatically reduce daily physicality. If you cannot put weight on your ankle or knee, then consider crutches to ease off the pressure.
- Ice –ice should be applied to the affected area for a maximum of 30 minutes. The ice should be wrapped in a towel, as if ice touches directly with the skin ice burn can be a result.
- Compression – weight should be applied to the affected area; this can be done with elastic compression bandages. The aim of compression is to limit swelling.
- Elevation – keep the injured area raised above heart level.
RICE therapy should take an affect after 48 hours. If symptoms worsen then advice should be sought from a GP. In most cases RICE therapy will work, in some rare cases additional treatment may be required.
If RICE therapy has not been effective then pain killers is another option to consider. Paracetamol can be used in addition with ibuprofen (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication). This will help reduce pain and swelling. Children who are under the age of 16 should not use Aspirin as it can cause Reye’s syndrome, a condition that can cause damage to the brain and liver.
By reducing movement (immobilisation) further damage to the area can be prevented. It can also reduce pain, muscle swelling and spasm. It also aims to increase the rate of the recovery period by encouraging flow of blood to the injured area.
Immobilisation can be achieved for the arm and shoulder by wearing a sling. A splint made from plastic aim to protect injured bones and soft tissue. Following on from a knee injury/surgery a rubber leg immobiliser can help fix the position and prevent the knee from bending.
Physiotherapy in Staffordshire, Wales, London, and other areas of the UK commonly involve massage, manipulation and special exercises. These aim to improve the range of motion and return the area to its normally working function. Patients who are recovering from a long-term injury can benefit from a routine of walking and swimming. This will help to strengthen the muscles in the affected area.