5 Common Sports Injuries

If you participate in sports, whether regularly or occasionally, you’re strengthening your cardiovascular and musculoskeletal systems but also putting yourself in harm’s way. That’s because all physical activity comes with the potential of collisions, falls, cuts, and bruises. 

If you find yourself on the sidelines because of a sports injury, Dr. Perry Weisman and our team of expert health care professionals at WiseCare Urgent Care can evaluate your condition and develop a treatment plan that will get you back in the game as quickly as possible. Here are five of the most common injuries you might encounter on the court or field.

Lacerations

A laceration is simply the medical term for cut skin. This can happen to you if you participate in a sport that involves equipment with sharp edges, like ice hockey, fencing, baseball (cleats) skiing, skating, or snowboarding. 

But you can also sustain a laceration from getting hit with a blunt object or body part, like an elbow during a rebound in basketball.

Depending on the depth, length, and location of your laceration, you may need immediate medical attention to clean the wound properly. While minor cuts will heal on their own over time as long as you keep them clean, others may require stitches or at least wound adhesive to help the edges knit back together.

You may need a tetanus shot if the wound is deep or dirty or if you haven’t had a booster in the last five years. 

Ankle sprain

One of the most common sports injuries is the sprained ankle. It can happen anytime you plant your foot with force, and your ankle turns inward, stretching the ligaments. 

The fast footwork needed in many sports, including volleyball, football, soccer, basketball, and tennis, all put you at risk for an ankle sprain. You may or may not hear a pop or a crack, but you’ll have pain and swelling. 

Dr. Weisman takes an X-ray to rule out a fracture and typically immobilizes it with a wrap or brace. Ice, elevation, and over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can reduce the swelling and ease the pain while you heal. 

Wrist sprain

Like your ankle, your wrist is a vulnerable joint when you play competitive sports. You sprain your wrist anytime you stretch the ligaments past their limit, which is easy to do if you fall on an outstretched hand, like during a slide in baseball, or a diving play in volleyball.

Sprains range from mild (stretched ligament) to severe (torn ligament). Like a sprained ankle, your sprained wrist needs plenty of rest, ice and elevation to reduce the swelling and pain, and possibly a splint to keep it stable for a few weeks.

Concussion

A concussion is considered the most common type of traumatic brain injury (TBI), affecting nearly 4 million athletes a year. It occurs when your head is hit or shaken with enough force to jostle your brain inside your skull. 

A head-to-head collision is the most obvious culprit, as well as the head pass in soccer. But your head doesn’t need to be directly involved to sustain a concussion; a violent body collision or fall could also jar your brain. 

Symptoms — dizziness, nausea, confusion, headache — may not show up for a few days, but it’s vital to seek medical attention immediately after the accident. It’s also critical to avoid repeat concussions as they can cause lasting damage.

Head injuries

Concussions aren’t the only type of head injury you need to worry about if you play sports. Scalp lacerations, skull fractures, and brain bleeding and bruising are also possible. This is why protective equipment is essential, especially helmets, whether you’re cycling or playing football or hockey.

At WiseCare Urgent Care, we’re here to evaluate the extent of your sports injury and get you on the proper treatment path so you won’t have to sit on the sidelines any longer than necessary. And when you get back in the game, you’ll be healthy and ready to play. 

If you’ve been injured in sports or other activity, call us at either of our locations in Severna Park or Pasadena, Maryland, or use our online tool to get in line virtually.

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