Sports injuries aren’t just physically painful, they are also mentally taxing as they prevent you from doing what you love. Having to sit on the sidelines and watch others compete while you wait to recover can be very discouraging and frustrating. As such, healing an injury as fast as possible is the goal of most injured athletes. To help get you back out there as soon as possible, here are some tips for recovering from a sports injury.
Take immediate action
After sustaining an injury, make sure to act immediately to decrease swelling, bruising, and pain. As a rule, many athletic trainers suggest following the R.I.C.E. method for muscle injuries: rest, ice, compress, elevate.
- Rest: Resting is an essential aspect of recovering from any injury. Because your muscles are likely to be vulnerable and weak, making sure that you don’t put any additional stress or pressure on them is vital.
- Ice: Applying ice to your injured muscle is especially important within the first couple of days following the injury. Doing so will reduce pain and swelling by decreasing blood flow to your injured area.
- Compress: To prevent the buildup of fluid in your injury, compress the area by wrapping it firmly with an elastic bandage—but not so tight that it causes pain or prevents blood flow. Doing so will also stabilize the area.
- Elevate: To further decrease swelling, elevating the injured area above your heart can help drain fluid.
Go to physical therapy regularly
Once you’ve sufficiently rested, it’s time to get active. Physical therapy is often essential to proper sports injury recovery. A physical therapist will help you develop an effective treatment plan composed of exercises and stretches tailored to helping your injury heal correctly. In addition, physical therapy sessions will likely shorten your recovery time and prevent future re-injury of the same area. Before starting physical therapy, get approval from your doctor so that you know you’re ready to start being more active again.
Visit a sports chiropractor
There is a reason why every professional sports team and the U.S. Olympic team have a professional chiropractor on staff. Sports chiropractors treat your body as an integrated system rather than just the individual injured area. By keeping the spine in proper alignment, adjustments will also help heal muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
Ease back into exercise
Just because your injury appears healed and you stop feeling pain doesn’t mean that you’re ready to jump back into your old exercise regime. Your injured area is likely still much weaker than it was before your accident. As such, if you immediately re-implement your rigorous training schedule, you risk reinjuring the same muscle—thus ruining all the progress that you made.
If you’re suffering from a sports injury, Libertyville Wellness Group offers various services that can help you heal properly and speed up your recovery time. Our services include physical therapy and rehabilitation, sports chiropractic services, and massage therapy in Libertyville, IL. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.