Any good physician will tell you the unlimited benefits of being active and exercising regularly. From improving your heart health, promoting longevity, and increasing your stamina, to providing mental stimulation and hormone regulation, there is no substitute for regular exercise and recreation. That being said, this active way of living brings a higher risk of injuries.
The Good News:
While an athlete is more at risk for injuries, it has been shown that high levels of physical activity reduce inflammation which can promote more rapid healing than that of someone who leads a more sedentary lifestyle. Additionally, common sports injuries like those we will discuss here can be avoided by practicing preventative care: wearing the right shoes, stretching, warming up, and increasing your distance, weight, or speed at a rate that allows your body to adjust to new challenges.
Common Types of Sports Injuries:
Of course, starting with plantar fasciitis, a condition we have discussed at length, we know this is an overuse injury and also one of the most common causes of foot pain. Among active people, stress fractures and ankle sprains can also be recurrent complaints. It is important to know how to prevent, identify, and treat these issues to avoid causing further damage. Learn more about ankle sprains here.
Stress Fractures are caused by the repetitive stress of the feet and ankles. Unlike a broken bone, a stress fracture presents as a small crack in the bone. Proper conditioning can help prevent a stress fracture. As mentioned above, proper equipment is also essential; that is, well-fitted shoes with good support.
Ankle Sprains can range from mild to severe. A sprain indicates damage to the ligaments of the ankle caused by a twisting of the foot. While incredibly common, it is crucial to treat the sprain to avoid future issues or a slowed-down healing process.
How Can I Get Back on My feet?
As an active person, I know how frustrating it can be to experience an injury that halts your training or simply inhibits you from enjoying the things you love to do. No matter how eager you are to get back to doing those things, it is key to allow for full and proper healing.
- RICE therapy: Rest, Icing, Compression, and Elevation. In other words, take it easy and stay off of the injured foot/ankle as much as you can, ice the injury regularly to inhibit swelling, wrap with an ace bandage or have the area taped by a podiatrist or athletic trainer.
- Take it easy and ease back in: we mentioned rest above, but it bears repeating. Once you are back to your regular exercise routine, be sure to take it easy and work your way up to the activity level you were used to before your injury.
- Get a professional involved: a common misconception about specialists is that people only need to see us when they have a severe issue. The truth is, seeing a podiatrist for moderate injuries can ensure that you are back on your feet in a timely fashion.
If you are unsure whether or not you should see a specialist for a sports injury, or even just for those persistent aches and pains, remember that it never hurts to call a professional.
Sports injuries are both painful and frustrating. Our number one goal is to get our patients back to doing the things that they enjoy doing with no pain and a better understanding of how to avoid injuries in the future.
Let a Professional Help
If you’re having troubles getting back on your feet after a sports injury, still feeling discomfort after treatment, or having any doubts about your recovery process, let a professional have a second opinion. If you are experiencing any heel pain, feeling of a sprain or strain, fracture, tendinitis, or any other problem persisting, call us right away at (989) 695-6788.