Most Common Youth Sport Injuries

Youth injuries are frightening to everyone for a variety of reasons. From a parent’s perspective, knowing that your child hurt is reason enough to pull them out of any sport for the rest of their lives. Your kids – and possibly their coach – worry that they may never be able to play again.

Thankfully, our body has strong muscles and bones that make us able to re-cooperate with a little rest; or with more extreme cases, some physical therapy. While allowing your child to play a sport has its potential risks, here are some very common injuries that can arise from intramural and team sports.

CommonYouthInjuries

Sprains & Strains

Many people can get the two of these injuries confused, but they are actually quite different. Sprains are ligament injuries that prevent excessive movement of the joints. Ankle sprains are quite common in sports like soccer, while wrist sprains can occur in football, basketball, and tennis

Strains can injure muscles or tendons. Due to the fact that we are dealing with bundles of cells that produce movement – muscles – and tissue that cushions the bones – tendons – most parts of the body are susceptible to injury.

Growth Plate Injury

The growth plate is an area in children and adolescents that holds developing tissue. When growth is complete, the tissue replaces solid bone. Long bones can include the hands and fingers, the forearms the legs, and the feet. These bone injuries are serious and should be consulted with an orthopedic surgeon.

Repetitive Motion Injuries

Hairline fractures and tendinitis are painful injuries related to stress. It’s important to know that these injuries may not always show up on hospital scans while they are still discomforting. Thankfully, a pack of ice and compression will relieve this pain quicker. In the most extreme cases, athletes need crutches, immobilization, and physical therapy.

Keeping kids active is extremely important to us. One thing to remember is that injuries should be reported as soon as they happen. Let us help you get back on the field as soon as possible. Contact us for more information on sports injuries and treatments today.

Turf Toe

You may be wondering what is turf toe, and do you have it? Turf toe is an injury of the soft tissue  structure in the plantar complex of your foot; or better explained in simplest terms as a sprain and pain in your big toe due to hyper-extension such as pushing off into a sprint.

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Most often, this is found in athletes who are pushing off their toes causing your big tor to hyper-extend.  Similar to other injuries that can occur to the body, there is a range of severity when it comes to turf toe and how it can effect you and the sports you play. These mild to severe injuries include:

Level 1 – This is the mildest pain you may feel with surf toe. You may experience tenderness and slight swelling.

Level 2 – This level is selected when there is a partial tear present causing more tenderness than level 1, and more swelling and may include bruising. Moving your toe(s) can be very limited and painful.

Level 3 – A complete tear has occurred leaving you with severe tenderness, swelling and bruising. It is almost too difficult to even more your big toe(s).

If you believe you are experiencing turf toe, seek medical advice and treatment from Dr. Irvine who specializes in foot and ankle injuries. You can call 314-567-5850 to schedule your appointment.

Get your balance back – in diet!

When it comes to playing & participating in sports like track and field, baseball, football and really any everyday activity, many people struggle with choosing the fulfilling foods right for fueling your body. Following the simple guidelines below will help you & your body live a healthier lifestyle and grant more energy!

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1) A balanced diet the key: A balanced diet is low in fat, high in carbs and just the right amount of protein. You may have heard of some athletes doing a “carb heavy” the day before an important event; however you should know that while carbs are important for energy, doing a carb heavy diet may leave you feeling weighed down and even tired. As always, it is important to make sure your intake includes enough proteins, nutrients and vitamins. And, always hydrate with water!

2) Breakfast is your friend: No matter how much you want to skip your breakfast, don’t! It is the most important meal of the day and helps jump start your metabolism and replenish your body from it’s sleeping phase overnight. Skipping breakfast has the potential to make you nauseous or tired, however eating too much at breakfast can weigh you down and make you feel sick. So, where is the give and take right? Eat a cup of greek yogurt topped with fresh fruit and walk out the door!

3) Ditch the energy drinks: Monster & 5 hour energy drinks might be tasty going down, however drinking these to give you an extra boost before your event or game can actually damage your body as it affects your heart rate. To stay hydrated the day of the game or event, make sure to drink enough water the day of, however be sure to cut yourself off about an hour or half hour before the start of the game/event. Looking for energy? How about grabbing a bottle of powerade to replenish the lost electrolytes or nom on a banana which is full of natural carbs.

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.

Common Swimming Injuries

Prevention tips for swimmers from Dr. Irvine

We are in the midst of the summer season, and one of the most popular summer activities is swimming. You do not have to be a professional swimmer to get a swimming injury, they can happen to anyone at anytime. However, elite swimmers who train more than five miles per day may experience more than others: joint pain, shoulder pain or discomfort, hip or back pain from rotation & even your knees may experience injury.
You may be wondering what causes swimming injuries exactly, since swimming is considered a low-impact fitness activity, Dr. Irvine is here to help you prevent some of the most common swimming injuries to keep you safe this summer and even into the swim season this school year.

Injury Prevention when Swimming, Swimming Injuries, How to avoid injury while swimming, Mo sports med

Shoulders

This may include rotator cuff, shoulder blade or even scapula, biceps tendinitis all which could cause stress surrounding your shoulder joint(s).

Knees, Hips, Back

This may include tendon & ligament damage. Those who breaststroke often may experience hip pain from hip tendon inflammation.

Prevention Tips

  • For elite swimmers: know the proper techniques to swimming.
  • If you are feeling pain or discomfort during swimming, tell someone immediately, whether a parent or your swim coach.
  • Make sure to get enough rest in between long periods of swimming to allow enough recovery time.
  • Perform core strengthening techniques for pre and early season routines.
  • If you have serious concerns, pains or aches consult with Dr. Irvine to help prevent any further or serious injuries.