Seek treatment early to assure your place on the team.
Playing sports and remaining active on a regular basis are good for your overall health. The medical community at large promotes an active lifestyle. Unfortunately, that same advice can lead to complications that leave you in less-than-stellar physical condition.
While nearly 80 percent of Americans will feel some form of back pain during their lifetimes, athletes are even more likely to suffer back injuries, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. At the same time, it’s those very athletes, from professionals to weekend warriors, who are too often reluctant to seek treatment for their sports injuries. Instead, they believe they can tough it out, walk it off or minimize the pain level with a can-do attitude.
Stay in the Game
From skiing, tennis and football to running, soccer and skating, nearly all sports put considerable stress on your back. If pain arises after an invigorating challenge or from an accident while playing, many athletes don’t want to quit. They believe they’ll let their team down if they succumb to the pain, or they just don’t realize how bad it can get if they don’t seek treatment.
About 10 percent of sports injuries occur in the lower back. A visit to a spinal specialist at the Southeastern Spine Institute (SSI) typically results in minor, non-invasive treatment that gets you back in the game sooner rather than later. It’s wise to seek treatment from doctors, such as those at SSI, who prefer to start with the least invasive treatments to heal your injuries. Early options include:
- Massage and stretching
- Heat, ice, compression and elevation
- Over-the-counter anti-inflammatories
- A period of rest
- Physical therapy
Next Steps, Same as the First
While continuing with your prescribed activities (as listed above), your doctor may need to treat an injury from your sport with a procedure that is a little more involved, yet remains non-invasive. These procedures allow you to very quickly return to your sport. Some of the less invasive treatments for sports injuries to your back may include:
Even when you do need to undergo surgery to repair an injury or to fix a repetitive motion problem in your back, you’ll be in good hands at SSI. With the latest surgical techniques, the newest equipment and the most competent surgeons, chances are you’ll be back playing your favorite sport with the same vigor you always had.
Better Now Than Later
Untreated sports injuries can keep you from enjoying your favorite sports. Without medical intervention, your injury may lead to permanent damage and disfigurement that results in never being able to play your sport again.
More extensive damage, such as a herniated disc or spondylolysthesis can be treated, allowing you to return to your activities in anywhere from four to 12 weeks. A few surgical treatments for back injuries include:
Finding the time to visit a spine specialist is in the best interests of both you and your team. There isn’t any reason to continue playing with pain. And there actually are far more reasons to seek treatment for sports injuries. Do it early and you can determine the extent of that treatment.