Preventing Musculoskeletal Sports Injuires in Youth: Part 3
Preventing Musculoskeletal Sports Injuries in Youth:
A Guide for Parents Part 3
(Presented by End Results Health & Wellness).
Childhood Sports Injuries:
A Common and Serious Problem
In the past 2 Newsletters we've talked about a few of the most common sports-related injuries to Kids.
Although sports injuries can range from scrapes and bruises to serious brain and spinal cord injuries, most fall somewhere between the two extremes. In this article we'll talk about repetitive motion injuries. We'll identify the more common ones, what they are, how they happen, how to treat them prior to visiting a Doctor, and how to prevent them!
Repetitive Motion Injuries
Repetitive motion disorders (RMDs) are a family of muscular conditions that result from repeated motions performed in the course of normal athletic and or daily activities.
RMDs are caused by too many uninterrupted repetitions of an activity or motion, unnatural or awkward motions such as twisting the arm or wrist, overexertion, incorrect posture, or muscle fatigue. RMDs occur most commonly in the hands, wrists, elbows, and shoulders, but can also happen in the neck, back, hips, knees, feet, legs, and ankles. The disorders are characterized by pain, tingling, numbness, visible swelling or redness of the affected area, and the loss of flexibility and strength. Over time, RMDs can cause temporary or permanent damage to the soft tissues in the body -- such as the muscles, nerves, tendons, and ligaments.
Painful injuries such as stress fractures (a hairline fracture of the bone that has been subjected to repeated stress) and tendinitis (inflammation of a tendon) can occur from overuse of muscles and tendons. Some of these injuries don't always show up on x rays, but they do cause pain and discomfort. The injured area usually responds to rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE). Other treatments can include crutches, cast immobilization, and physical therapy.
Treatment For Repetitive Motion Disorders
Treatment for RMDs usually includes reducing or stopping the motions that cause symptoms. Options include taking breaks to give the affected area time to rest, and adopting stretching and relaxation exercises. Applying ice to the affected area and using medications such as pain relievers, cortisone, and anti-inflammatory drugs can reduce pain and swelling. Splints may be able to relieve pressure on the muscles and nerves. Physical therapy may relieve the soreness and pain in the muscles and joints. In rare cases, surgery may be required to relieve symptoms and prevent permanent damage. Some employers have developed ergonomic programs to help workers adjust their pace of work and arrange office equipment to minimize problems.
How Do You Prevent Repetitive Motion Disorders?
Most individuals with RMDs recover completely and can avoid re-injury by changing the way they perform repetitive movements, the frequency with which they perform them, and the amount of time they rest between movements. Without treatment, RMDs may result in permanent injury and complete loss of function in the affected area.
- Have a professional ergonomic Sports Coach evaluate your Childs activity.
- Enroll your child in organized sports specific training program directed and overseen by a Certified Strength and Conditioning Expert such as the ones at End Results Health & Wellness.
- End Results has sports specific programs and Trainers on staffs who are certified athletic trainers. These individuals are trained to prevent, recognize, and provide immediate care for athletic injuries.
- Make sure your child has-and consistently uses-proper gear for a particular sport. This may reduce the chances of being injured.
- Make warm-ups and cool-downs part of your child's routine before and after sports participation. Warm-up exercises make the body's tissues warmer and more flexible. Cool-down exercises loosen muscles that have tightened during exercise.
- Make sure your child has access to water or a sports drink while playing or exercising. Encourage him or her to drink frequently and stay properly hydrated. Remember to include sunscreen and a hat (when possible) to reduce the chance of sunburn, which is a type of injury to the skin. Sun protection may also decrease the chances of malignant melanoma-a potentially deadly skin cancer-or other skin cancers that can occur later in life.
End Results Health & Wellness has developed unique sports specific exercise programs to help prevent injuries from occurring in young Athletes. For more details about our Periodization Sports Specific Youth Athletic program contact us.
This article was written by Curtis Mann
Co- Owner and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.
Information for this News Article was obtained from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) and the National Institutes of Health.