Youth Injuries & Sport Care: When It’s All In Your Head

Missouri Orthopedics, Advanced Sports & Medicine, Stl doctor, concussion

Youth head injuries are frightening and frustrating, especially when you’re a driven and determined athlete used to pushing through other injuries. Even a mild concussion can cause significant injury to your brain, and this makes it even more important to understand what to expect during the process of recovery.

When your injury is “all in your head”, sometimes it is difficult to take ongoing symptoms seriously. Since giving your brain a chance to heal is so important to your future performance, here are a few important things to keep in mind.

1. Be honest. Let your coach, parents, and doctor know if you’re experiencing symptoms of concussion. While you may be tempted to gloss over lingering headaches or trouble concentrating after an injury, ignoring symptoms may mean you re-injure your brain and have an even longer recovery.

2. Expect recovery to take time. According to a study published February 2016 in The Journal of Pediatrics, recovery from a concussion takes more time for younger players and those who have yet to go through puberty, with the average recovery time between about 33 and 54 days.

3. Expect frustration. You may have trouble with things like balance, sleeping, and concentration. You may have less of an appetite, experience headaches, and have a hard time predicting your emotional response to stress. While your brain heals, its normal to feel frustrated with symptoms.

4. If symptoms come back after you’ve been cleared to return to active sports, speak up! Recovery from concussion is a complex process and some symptoms can linger. Your doctor is the best one to determine a safe level of activity depending on what you’re experiencing.

While youth injuries are frightening and frustrating, the good news about having an injury that’s “all in your head” is that most young people with a concussion do experience complete recovery. Understanding what to expect during the process will help reduce your stress as you work to regain complete health.

Providing treatment for youth injuries and sport care is a big part of what we do. We’re committed to working with you to help manage your symptoms and get you back to active sports as soon as its safe for you to do so. Please contact us and we’ll work with you every step of the way.

Tips to keep your feet safe this Halloween!

Top Toe Shape!

With all of the frights, and terrors let’s leave our feet out of the scary mess. Sprained ankles, added weight to your feet from a cosutme or high heels; whatever it may be: below we have listed tips & advice on how to take it easy on your feet this Halloween season.

MO Sports Med, Foot Safety

1. Layers, layers, layers! An overlooked healthy tip in keeping your feet not only warm, but safe from additional harm is to layer your socks especially when it’s frigid outside which often happens around Halloween. Try to stay away from cotton socks as they absorb the moisture.

2. Keep an eye out on the tempature. If you are planning on being out & about on Halloween night, make sure that tempatures are safe for all night activities such as trick or treating. Consider the wind chill when hitting the spooky streets, as wet & cold feet are painful & to help prevent frostbite.

3. Insulation, please. Keep your shoes insulated for added layers of protection. Especially if your customer calls for a thin layer of outer protection.

4. Step out of your costume. Like the above tip, sometimes our costumes call for a very thing shoe & some costumes recommend no shoes. While shoes may not be in style for your costume, we recommend wearing them for support.

5. High heeled beauty. We’re sure you’ve experienced blisters, nerve pain on the balls of your feet, and plantar fasciitis from the heel pain your shoes carry; none of which are a spirited way to end a fun night! Keep in mind that the pain from high heels are not always worth the sex-kitten look your costume may bring.

6. Reflect yourself. Did you know that each Halloween, at least five kids are hit by cars? It is a good idea to put bright, reflective tape on your child’s shoes so they can be seen in the dark.

7. Safety first. There will be several tripping hazard from decorative items on Halloween such as pumpkins, ghouls and other scary decorations on peoples porches, steps and yards. Be sure to talk with your kids & remind them to always be on the look out and to carry a flash light so they can see where they are walking. If sidewalks are available, always use those.

Take Concussions Seriously

Signs of concussion

Before hitting the football, baseball and soccer fields for practice in your upcoming fall season, make sure you are informed & educated on concussions.

What is a concussion? Long term damage to the brain due to an injury.

Concussions can happen to anyone who plays any sport, including sports such as basketball, wrestling, tennis & gymnastics. If you suspect someone has a concussion, the most important thing you can do is to remove them from the field of play and have them seek medical help. Hopefully your coach went though a training course on how to recognize when one of their player may be experiencing symptoms of a concussion.  Some concussion signs to look for include:

  • Confusion
  • Appearing dazed
  • Acting clumsy or moving rather slow
  • Memory loss. For example: the score of the game, or where they are
  • Unconsciousness

If you are a parent reading this article, we caution you against debating the authority the coach may make to remove your child from the game upon suspecting they are experiencing a concussion.  It is better to be safe, than sorry. And, returning to a game while experiencing a concussion can really cause some further brain trauma.

Just remember, that after seeking medical help for a concussion, it is important to continue to build your way back to recover and take things slow. And, that includes the doctors specific orders they may give about returning to the sport & playing field.

Upon receiving approval from a doctor to regain their physical activity, and they have been cleared to begin working out again, we suggest taking exercise slow. Concussions are a serious issue and it is important athletes take the time they need to recover from any head injury before returning to play.

For any questions regarding concussion or the safety of your health while playing on the field, give Dr. Irvine a call today.

Back to school

Backpack/Bookbag Safety

Bookbag safety, Backpack safety, Back pains

Children’s health and safety has been a continued concern for teachers, parents and health care specialists including Dr. Irvine. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, injuries from heavy backpacks result in more than 7,000 emergency room visits per year. Sprains and strains were among the top complaints in children.
Dr. Irvine suggests double checking the weight of your child’s backpack when it is full.
A rule of thumb, a backpack should weigh only 15% of a child’s total weight.  For example, if your child weights 100 pounds, their backpack when full should weight 15 pounds maximum, according to the American Occupational Therapy Association.  Also keep in mind when school supply shopping this year, that backpack straps should be wide and padded.  Make adjustments to the backpack so that the bottom of the full backpack is not more than four inches below your child’s waistline. If you are concerned about the weight of your child’s backpack, a rolling bookbag is a fantastic alternative option.

Stay safe this baseball season

Stay healthy this baseball season by using these exercise tips

February marks the return of baseball with players reporting to their spring training camps. It’s also about time for the lower-level teams to begin practicing for the upcoming baseball season.

After a long winter, it can be an adjustment for players to get back in the routine of throwing a baseball, especially if your child has been participating in another sport or took a season off. This adjustment could spur injuries whether it be pulled muscles, ligament injuries or contusions.

As noted by OrthoInfo.AAOS.org, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission reported more than 414,000 baseball-related injuries in the United States in 2010. That number only includes those who were treated in hospitals, doctors’ offices or emergency rooms. More than 282,000 of those injuries were to players 18 years old or younger.

The most common injuries in baseball are mild soft tissue injuries. These injuries are the muscle pulls, ligament injuries, cuts, and bruises. The repetitive nature of the sport can also cause injuries to the shoulder and elbow.

What should you do before you play?

For players, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) recommends you have a pre-season physical exam. Doctors will be able to determine any potential medical problems, such as asthma, allergies, heart, or orthopaedic conditions.

It’s also important for players to warm up and stretch before any activity.

For coaches, knowing first aid is vital for recognizing and treating common injuries. Coaches should also know where they can find a telephone and a cardiac defibrillator in case of an emergency. Knowing the rules and encouraging safe play is also vital to keeping players injury-safe.

It’s also important to know the guidelines for youth baseball in terms of how many pitches can be thrown and which type of pitches, according to age. The USA Baseball Medical & Safety Advisory Committee recommends the following pitch count limits:

Age Max.
Pitches/Game
Max.
Pitches/Week
8 – 10 50 75
11 – 12 75 100
13 – 14 75 125
15 – 16 90 2 games / week
17 – 18 105 2 games / week

For more information on how to stay safe this baseball season, click here.

If you have suffered an injury playing baseball, please seek immediate care. If it isn’t an emergency, please visit Missouri Orthopedics & Advanced Sports Medicine for care and treatment.

Original article: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00185