Sports injuries are a common occurrence for athletes and weekend warriors. While some sports injuries can be minor and respond to home treatments, others need a doctor’s intervention. Fortunately, there are doctors that specialize in the treatment of injured athletes, and they can help you get back into the game as soon as possible.
The first step in treating a sports injury is to properly diagnose it, so an appropriate treatment plan can be developed. This usually involves a physical examination and taking X-rays or other imaging tests to determine the extent of the injury. Below, we talk about some of the treatments for sports injuries and exercise recovery.
Non-Surgical Treatments for Sports Injuries
Non-surgical treatments are typically used by sports medicine doctors to treat a wide range of injuries. Without surgery, athletes can have a faster recovery. Some of the treatments recommended for sports injuries include rest, ice therapy, compression bandages or wraps, the elevation of the injured area above heart level, and physical therapy exercises designed to improve strength and flexibility in the affected areas.
In addition, medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief, corticosteroid injections, bracing or splinting of joints, massage therapy, and ultrasound with electrical stimulation may also be part of the treatment. These non-invasive techniques altogether are proven to be very effective in reducing pain and swelling, preventing stiffness, promoting muscle relaxation, boosting circulation, building strength, and improving flexibility and range of motion.
Surgical Treatments for Sports Injuries
Sometimes, a sports injury does not respond to conservative treatment or becomes a chronic issue, in which case, the sports medicine doctor may recommend surgery. This is also the approach for severe sports injuries, such as torn ligaments or tendons, complex fractures, and traumatic injuries.
Sports medicine doctors may use arthroscopic surgery to remove damaged tissue, repair a tear, and remove bone fragments. This technique is minimally invasive, requiring only very small incisions to access the area of interest. Since there is less disturbance to healthy tissue, patients can expect a faster recovery, with less pain and a lower risk of complications. Doctors can use arthroscopic surgery to repair damaged bones, joints, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. For complex fractures, sports medicine doctors may perform fixation surgery, which involves setting broken bones back into place and using pins, screws, and plates to hold them in the right position.
No matter what kind of treatment you receive, it is important to understand that proper rehabilitation must follow either option in order to ensure your readiness to return to your sport or activity. Rehabilitation involves a variety of treatments and exercises designed to help you return to your pre-injury level of performance. The goal is to restore strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination, balance, and overall fitness while reducing pain and preventing further injury.
Recovering from a sports injury, while can be made faster with the help of a doctor, requires patience. After all, you should be giving your body time to heal completely. If sports injury treatment and rehabilitation are done correctly, you can enjoy your sport longer and come back stronger than ever.
Sports Injury Treatment in Westlake and Avon, OH
At Orthopaedic Associates, our orthopedic surgeons provide quick and comprehensive treatment for active individuals with injuries. We like to focus on providing non-surgical treatment for our patients, but if surgery is necessary, we have the advanced training and experience needed to perform it successfully. In addition, we also provide superior physical therapy and rehabilitation services.
Come to us for your sports medicine needs, and we can help enhance your athletic performance. To schedule an appointment, call our office today at (440) 892-1440. We look forward to serving you.