What do sunshine and blooming flowers have to do with sports injuries?
Well, a lot actually.
As the weather gets nicer, many of us can hardly wait to get back to kicking that soccer ball, racing toward that finish line, or hitting those home runs. And that’s great! Staying active can improve your overall health and lower your risk of developing many diseases. So, we encourage you to keep playing the sports you love, but you should take some precautions while you’re at it.
It is during this time of year that the rate of sports injuries increase quite a bit. This is especially true when it comes to feet and ankles – the constant impact, the twists, the turns, and the landings your feet and ankles endure as you charge towards your goal can all lead to painful injuries. Next thing you know, you are sitting on the sidelines as your teammates sweat for the win.
Even if you are just a weekend warrior looking for some competitive games with your buddies once in a while, taking care of your feet and preparing them for your sports of choice can mean the difference between showing your “competitors” who is boss and having to wear a cast for months to treat an injury that could have been prevented in the first place.
But we have good news – we offer a variety of advanced treatment methods aimed to get athletes and weekend warriors like you back in the game as quickly and as safely as possible. This starts by providing you with important knowledge about foot and ankle conditions, including how to treat and prevent them.
Let’s get to it.
What Are the Most Common Sports Injuries?
There are many possible injuries one can endure while participating in sports activities. You may develop an ingrown toenail from playing basketball, or you may suffer a bone fracture from playing football – the possibilities are, unfortunately, truly endless.
But some of the most common sports related injuries we treat at our Richardson, TX office include:
- Ankle sprains. These types of injuries happen whenever the foot twists or rotates suddenly and at an awkward angle. This sudden movement causes the connective tissues which hold the joint together to stretch beyond their range of motion.
Ankle sprains can range from moderate to severe. But
- Shin splints. This condition typically develops in runners and dancers, or in athletes who have recently intensified or changed training routines – doing so overworks the muscles, tendons and bone tissue. The general symptom is pain along the side of the shin bone, especially after participating in physical activities.
Pain in the shins is never normal! And, when left untreated, shin splints can become a bigger problem in the future.
- Plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis essentially causes inflammation and pain in the tissue that connects the heel to the toes. Pain is usually experienced in the bottom of the heel when first rising out of bed, or when first standing after sitting for long periods, or after participating in an activity.
- Stress fractures. This is an injury which is typically caused by overuse – after repetitive jumping and running motions, tiny cracks in the bone begin to develop and may grow over time if left untreated.
As an overuse injury, pain is usually gradual – becoming worse when performing activities and decreasing after rest. But just because the pain “eventually goes away,” you shouldn’t dismiss it as normal or not a big deal. Instead, come visit our office right away.
As you can see, there is one common thread amongst most types of sports injuries – the importance of prompt medical diagnosis and treatment for optimal recovery. The bottom line is that whenever you suspect you have suffered an injury – sports-related or not – your best course of action is to seek professional care and guidance.
Have You Suffered a Sports Injury?
Hopefully—knock on wood—you don’t suffer the pains of a sports injury, but if you do, start by stopping whatever activity you are engaged in, removing your shoes, elevating your legs, and applying ice to the injured area.
As soon as you are able, contact our office to schedule an appointment so that we can diagnose your specific condition and provide the treatment you need to relieve pain and properly heal.
While you wait to come in for your visit, avoid bearing weight on your injured foot or ankle, and use the RICE treatment method:
- Rest. Stop all activities, at least until you are able to come visit us for evaluation. If you still want to stay active, then choose low-impact exercises like swimming.
- Ice. Apply a cold pack for about 15 minutes, 3 times a day for the first 72 hours.
- Compression. Wrap the sore area with the firm pressure of a soft elastic material, such as a cushioned bandage to help decrease the swelling and irritation.
- Elevation. Keep the area elevated above the level of your heart to help diminish swelling.
You can also take over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications in order to better manage symptoms.
When you come visit us, we will thoroughly examine your feet and ankles, using in-house, state-of-the-art diagnostic services – this will help us create a treatment regimen that best suits your specific condition.
The methods used to address different injuries largely depend on the severity of pain and the extent of the damage associated with the injury. But we are glad to say that many conditions can easily be treated with conservative methods, like wearing custom orthotics and appropriate footwear, as well as stretching before and after activities.
In more rare and severe cases, however, surgery may be needed to provide relief and correct the problem. And if that ends up being the case for you, then you can rest assured that we will discuss in-depth what that means for you and your recovery (so that you are well-informed when moving forward with your decision).
Find Expert Foot and Ankle Care at Richardson Podiatry
The truth is that whenever we are physically active, the chances of developing painful conditions and suffering sports injuries naturally increase. So, if you do develop pain and discomfort in your feet or ankles, come see us at Richardson Podiatry right away – our team of experts will provide you with the most effective sports injury care available.
To schedule an appointment at our Richardson, TX office, just give us a call today at (972) 690-5374 or simply fill out our contact form online to have one of our trained staff members reach out to you.