Playing sports is an excellent way to get some exercise, improve your strength, boost your confidence, and make meaningful connections with other athletes. The benefits of playing sports abound, but the more you practice and compete, the higher your risk of sustaining an injury. Should you or your child get hurt on a court or field, in a rink or backyard, or in any other location where sports are played, it’s crucial to receive prompt and proper care from a team of doctors you trust.
The Importance of Proper Care
Physical exercise and exertion can result in sprains, strains, breaks, and/or tears. Though the bones, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, muscles, and joints that make up your musculoskeletal system are impressively strong and resilient, they can only withstand certain amounts of external trauma and repetitive stress.
Here at The Foot and Ankle Specialists of Central PA, our podiatrists specialize in injuries relating to the foot, ankle, and lower leg. Signs of an injury in these locations include pain, swelling, stiffness, tenderness, and/or bruising. These and other signs can appear suddenly or over a period of time. If you suspect you have sustained a sports-related injury, we invite you to make an appointment at our office so you can receive a thorough evaluation.
We can’t emphasize enough how important it is to seek treatment for your injury as soon as you can; a timely diagnosis not only ensures that you receive proper treatment but also helps to expedite your recovery.
When to See a Podiatrist
If your sports-related injury is located in or near your foot, ankle, or lower leg, a podiatrist can accurately diagnose and properly treat it. Podiatrists can administer a variety of treatments, including applying a cast or splint; setting a fracture; referring you to a physical therapy program; and/or ordering x-rays and other tests. Podiatrists want to alleviate your symptoms, heal what hurts, and get you back in the game sooner rather than later.
Common Types of Sports-Related Injuries
Common types of sports-related injuries include ankle sprains, stress fractures, and broken bones. Achilles tendon-related injuries are also common.
The longest—and strongest—tendon in the human body, the Achilles tendon connects your heel bone to your calf muscles. When you flex this tendon during physical activity, you pull on your heel. This allows you to walk, run, and perform other movements. For as strong as this tendon is, its blood supply is limited and the tendon weakens over time.
Common injuries associated with the Achilles tendon include tears, ruptures, and Achilles tendinitis. All of these are treatable by our friendly and knowledgeable podiatrists at The Foot and Ankle Specialists of Central PA.
Our Preventive Care Recommendations
Making an effort to prevent sports-related injuries is worthwhile. Two excellent preventative care methods involve stretching and strengthening. Stretching can loosen the tendons and muscles in your body while strengthening exercises can improve the strength of those aforementioned tissues. Establishing a strengthening and stretching routine can lower your risk of injury. If you need more preventative care suggestions, talk to your podiatrist, who will be happy to provide additional preventative care advice