Sports Injury Specialist Question and Answers
If you or someone you love has a sports injury, visit Broadway Family Clinic. Our doctors and professional healthcare staff will provide comprehensive treatment for your injury. For more information, call us today or visit us online to book an appointment.
What kind of doctor treats sports injuries?
Many different types of doctors are able to diagnose and treat sports injuries, depending on the type of injury sustained and the extent of the injury. Understanding the different types of medical professionals who can treat sports injuries can help you know where to turn in the event you do sustain an injury during some form of physical activity. Orthopedics are commonly known medical professionals for the treatment of sports injuries as they have specialized training in the musculoskeletal system. The musculoskeletal system is made up of the muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, and joints in the body which is the system that is most affected by sports or exercise-related injuries. Orthopedics can also choose to focus their specialization on a specific part of the body, such as knees, spine, shoulders, hips, and ankles as these joints have a high likelihood for injury. Physiatrists are another professional that can treat sports-related injuries, also called a rehabilitation physician. They focus on various types of pain in the body, including back pain, nerve pain, muscle pain, and neck pain. They are also able to treat issues such as herniated discs, arthritis, and pinched nerves that are sustained from a work or sports injury. If you aren’t sure which type of doctor you should see for a sports-related injury, your family doctor or an urgent care center will be able to direct you to the right specialist if they aren’t able to treat you themselves. In the case that you go to an orthopedist or physiatrist, if they aren’t the right doctor to help, they will ensure you get referred to the right one to diagnose and treat your injury.
When should you see a doctor for a sports injury?
You should see a doctor for a sports or exercise-related injury if you are in extreme pain, if there is excessive swelling or if you are unable to put weight on or use the affected area. In the case of a minor injury, if you don’t see an improvement to the injury in a couple of weeks, or whatever is a normal healing time for your body, it is a good idea to get it checked out to ensure it wasn’t injured worse than you originally thought. Sports medicine doctors can also help with injury prevention, so if you are an active person or participate regularly in sports, having a sports medicine doctor as part of your care team can be a good idea. They are trained to watch how the body moves to determine if there are any weaknesses or imbalances that could lead to injury. They will work with you on balancing out the affected area through stretching and strength-building exercises.
What are the most common injuries in sports?
The commonalities of sports injuries will vary from one sport to another, with higher frequencies of injuries being the result of the type of movement used in the sport. Repetitive use injuries such as tennis elbow and patellofemoral syndrome, or knee pain, are common joint injuries that occur in tennis, golf, and running-based activities. ACL tears are a common injury, often as the result of quickly changing direction in sports such as football, soccer, and baseball. Runners can suffer from the patellofemoral syndrome, but also shin splints in the lower leg. Hamstring strains are the result of the back of the thigh stretching too far, typically associated with hurdling or where an impact or fall can cause the leg to hyperextend. Groin pulls are common in soccer, hockey, football, and baseball, where the participants push off using side-to-side movements frequently. The most common sports injury though is an ankle sprain. This can occur in almost any sport and is usually the result of the ankle being turned in the wrong direction while weight is applied to it. Most sports injuries can be treated with ice, compression, and rest, without the need for medical intervention. Some injuries such as ACL tears and hamstring strains do take longer to heal and can benefit from a consultation with a doctor.
Is sports medicine the same as physical therapy?
Sports medicine and physical therapy are not the same things, although they are both focused on healing injuries that are often the result of participation in sports. To practice sports medicine, doctors are required to hold a medical degree and complete additional post-graduate medical training. They are able to properly diagnose injuries and provide treatment plans, that can include prescribing medication. Physical therapy is often part of a patient’s overall treatment plan and is focused on healing through the use of non-invasive techniques. They work with their patients to regain strength, flexibility and range of motion to parts of the body that have been injured or suffer from chronic pain. Physical therapists do not have to attend medical school, but they do need a physical therapy doctoral degree.
For more information about sports injury, book an appointment online today, or give us a call. We serve patients from Pearland TX, Shadow Creek Ranch TX, Southern Trail TX, Pomona TX, Southlake TX, Sienna Plantation TX, Fresno TX, Manvel TX, and Rosharon TX.