How To Prevent Two Of The Most Common Athletic Injuries

Playing the sport you're good at with your whole heart and a good amount of zeal is important--especially if you want to be on the winning side. While giving it your all should be a top priority for most teammates, it can sometimes lead to medical problems down the road if not enough care is taken to prevent injury. It may be easy in your excitement to rush out onto the field for the big game, but not taking the necessary preparations before sports can leave you down and out for a long time. There are all sorts of injuries that can occur to an athlete, but statistics say that there are a few types that are more prevalent than others...and that there's a way to make sure these two common injuries don't happen to you:

Ankle Sprain and Muscle Strains

A sprained ankle and strained muscles may possibly be some of the most prevalent sports injuries that you can encounter. While some of these accidents may be beyond your control and happen as a result of unfortunate circumstance, there are actually steps you can tangibly take to reduce the possibility of encountering a painful sprain or strain:

  • A muscle strain, more commonly known as a "pulled muscle," can be caused by too much of a good thing. You've likely been told time and time again by your coach about the importance of adequate stretching before the big game-- but stretching too much or too far can actually tear fibers within your muscle, causing long lasting pain. Take it easy during the pre-game stretching and you'll be just fine.
  • An ankle sprain is simply a localized form of a muscle strain-- but the pain can be much more severe than some strains. Keep ice on the affected ankle for 20 minutes every few hours and keep pressure off of it no matter how tempted you are to do otherwise.

Shin Splints

At times, the source of a shin splint can seem mysterious and hard to tackle-- but the effects can be felt in the form of an intense or throbbing pain in the shins during or after running. Believe it or not, there may be a simple solution to this big problem:

  • At times, simply getting new shoes (or orthopedic inserts to put inside your shoes) can take away the problem completely. If your feet do not have the right amount of support, it can end up putting an unnecessary amount of pressure on your shins, causing the pain.
  • If you are currently experiencing pain due to shin splits, try using ice on the affected area to reduce swelling for a few days until the pain disappears.
  • If problems persist, you may want to consider looking into seeing a physical therapist for an expert opinion.

For more information, contact Dr. Lisa M. Schoene or a similar medical professional.