Children enjoy their time engaging in sports activities both indoors and outdoors. Their energy and enthusiasm sometimes cause them to sustain injuries that can be painful and keep them from activities. Some of the common injuries can be treated at home, but others require medical treatment.
Children often sustain muscle sprains as a result of sports and playground activities. Shoulder, ankle and knee sprains are the most common. These injuries can be managed at home by applying the R.I.C.E. technique. R.I.C.E. stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation. Resting the limb allows the tiny tears in the muscle to heal quickly. Icing the area reduces swelling and restores mobility. Compression also helps to reduce swelling. Elevation prevents excess fluid build-up in the injured part. A sprain generally takes a day or two to heal. If pain and swelling persist, you should consult a doctor to determine a more serious injury has occurred.
Growth Plate Injuries
Children’s bones grow by cellular extension at the growth plate. These areas can be very vulnerable to injury during athletic activities. These tender growths can chip off, requiring splinting or pinning them back into position. Growth plates at the elbows, thighs, lower legs, wrists and fingers. The growth plates of the feet are often involved in children’s sports injuries. For injuries serious enough to see a podiatrist Chattanooga residents should call our office for an evaluation.
In contact sports such as football, dislocations of the shoulder can occur. This injury occurs when the head of the humerus bone skips out of its position in the shallow socket in the shoulder. The dislocation can be partial or full. Nerves or blood vessels can become damaged when this injury occurs. The child should be seen by a doctor to ensure that no fracture of the bone has occurred and that the shoulder is properly reset into its socket.
Knee joint injuries are another common childhood injury. These injuries can occur during running, jumping or pivoting movements in which the knee cartilage and ligaments may experience twisting injuries. Rest, bracing of the injury and over-the-counter pain relievers are standard home treatment for these injuries. However, some of these injuries may be serious enough to need medical treatment.
Repetitive Motion Tendonitis
Sports that require repetitive motions such as tennis or soccer sometimes cause tendonitis and hairline fractures of the bones. Standard R.I.C.E treatment can help to relieve the discomfort from these injuries. Bracing of the joint can help to support the area during healing. Physical therapy may be necessary to restore full function.