When it comes to taking care of your children, you want to find the very best to treat all their injuries and illnesses. That’s why a casual search for a “chiropractor near me” might not be enough to help you find what you need. If your children participate in sports and recreational activities then you want to find a chiropractor near you with the knowledge and expertise to provide care and treatment for growing bodies. Young athletes are particularly vulnerable to certain injuries because of the physicality involved in their sports and activities. Chiropractic care is a safe, natural way to address common injuries without the use of medications or invasive procedures in people of all ages, especially young athletes.
How Injuries Can Affect Young Athletes
Participating in sports provide young athletes with so many positive benefits as they learn teamwork, develop confidence, and improve their health through regular physical activity. However, there are risks associated with participating in sports and injuries can happen. Young athletes are particularly prone to certain types of sports injuries due to their growing bodies. Children and adolescents experience growth spurts that include rapid changes in height and weight, which can affect coordination, motor skills, and even flexibility. While sports and recreational activities are a great way to help young athletes form healthy, active habits, it is important that they learn how to do so safely in order to help avoid common injuries.
Types of Common Sports Injuries
The two main categories of sports injuries in young athletes are overuse injuries and acute injuries. Acute injuries occur suddenly, like a pulled muscle or a broken bone, while overuse injuries can develop over time with repetitive movements. Both types of injuries can affect your child’s health and growth if not taken care of appropriately and as soon as possible.
Common examples of overuse injuries in young athletes are actually named after common sports and activities where they occur, like jumper’s knee, little league elbow, and little league shoulder. A child or teenager might not notice the knee or elbow pain and discomfort at first, or may even consider playing through the pain. However, over time swelling and inflammation can make certain movements extremely painful and affect their ability to participate in the sport.
Many overuse injuries occur when young athletes don’t allow their bodies enough time to rest and heal in between activities. Overuse injuries are also more common in young athletes who play the same sport year-round, which puts continued pressure on the same muscles and bones throughout the year. If your young athlete develops an overuse injury from participating in the same sport, consider switching to another sport during an off-season to give their body some rest and allow their bodies to practice new movements and techniques. For example, a track and field athlete may enjoy the benefits of competitive swimming for a more low-impact activity that is still highly aerobic.
An acute injury is generally more obvious right away, like when sudden trauma occurs on the playing field. Common examples of acute injuries include fractures, dislocations, and tears. A fracture is the medical word for a broken bone, and even something seemingly as small as a broken finger can impact a young athlete’s ability to participate in their sport. Dislocations are common in the shoulders, especially in contact sports, or in the kneecaps with sports that involve a lot of twisting or overextension of the legs. Concussions are also becoming increasingly common in competitive youth sports, and require medical treatment right away to rule out any damage to the brain or spine.
Many times, acute injuries will require your young athlete to take some time away from the sport they love so they can heal. A brace or splint may be required to help stabilize a joint or muscle while it heals, which may temporarily limit certain movements. In more serious cases, surgery may be required. Talk to your chiropractor about how to support your young athlete and help them prepare for getting back on the field through strengthening and supportive stretches and exercises.
Preventing Common Sports Injuries
It’s important to to know how to pick a good chiropractor. Even if your young athlete has not yet experienced an injury while participating in their sport or activity, you may want to search for a “chiropractor near me” to help establish healthy habits and preventative care. Athletes of all ages can benefit from chiropractic care in both recovery and prevention of common sports injuries. If you live in Jonesboro then visit our AICA Orthopedics office and meet our team of chiropractors who will support your young athlete through their healing, recovery, and growth.