If your kids love to take an active part in sports, that’s awesome! Playing games encourages the development of discipline, team spirit, and sportsmanship. Above all and most important, it cuts back on the time kids spend with devices. However, playing sports carries the very real possibility of injuries. While acute sports injuries are commonplace, chronic injuries can affect the growing musculoskeletal structure of a child’s body.
In the year 2012 alone, more than 1.3 million kids reported to the emergency room with sports injuries ranging from ankle sprains, ligament tears, and head trauma, among others. As a parent, you must do the best you can to protect your kids from such injuries. And, since they are unavoidable, use the best treatments possible to help them recover quickly and get back in the game, one of them being PRP treatment for sports injuries.
Prevention is Better than Cure
Avoiding getting sports injuries is always preferable than treating them and going through the long and sometimes, difficult rehabilitation process. So, what you can do to help prepare your kids for playing sports?
- Make sure your children have all the protective gear they needincluding knee guards, elbow pads, helmets, and shoes with proper grips, to name a few. Talk to the coach for information on the right kind of gear that can help prevent sports injuries.
- While your kids might have a particular interest in a specific sport, having them play different games can help lower the risk of chronic injuries. Think baseball, soccer, lacrosse, football, and basketball.
- Talk to the coach about having your kids practice a range of different movementsso that repetitive motions don’t stress a particular joint.
- If your children are playing a single sport all through the season, make sure you get them physical therapy to prepare their bodies before the start of the season.
- Before the academic year begins, kids go through the preseason physicals to assess their fitness levels. Depending on the sport they’ll play, request your pediatrician to take a close look at their muscles and joints. For instance, if your child has been preparing to pitch in a baseball game, have her shoulder muscles examined thoroughly. But, if she’s on the cheerleading squad, you’ll need to pay particular attention to her lower back and core muscles.
- Talk to your kids about the importance of warming up their muscles before playing a game to prevent sports injuries. Warming up can include dynamic and static exercises such as touching the toes, jumping, stretching, and other moves that help loosen the muscles.
- Insist that your kids get complete rest and adequate sleep so they can recover from the stress of the sport.
- Consult with the pediatrician and coach andwork out a healthy, balanced diet plan that includes lots of nutritious foods including lean protein, fruits, and vegetables. Make sure your child eats regular meals and takes adequate fluids to remain hydrated.
- Explain to your kids that they must carefully follow the instructions and guidelines that their coach outlines. Ensure that they understand the importance of safety when playing.
Watch Your Child Carefully
An important factor to keep in mind is that kids become so engrossed and focused on playing that they may overlook any sports injuries they get on the field. As a parent, you must keep a sharp lookout for any signs that indicate your child is hurt. These symptoms can include swelling of the joints, pain, and soreness even after resting well and consistent pain while playing or when at home. If you notice your child limping or indicating that the joints are “giving way,” get medical attention immediately.
Caring for Your Child
If you think your child is hurt, consult the primary care physician right away. In case your child needs specialized treatment, she will refer you to the best sports injuries doctor or orthopedist that can help you. Here are the typical treatment steps you might have to follow;
- Avoid letting your children play until the injury has healed completely. This factor is especially important if they have limited movement in any joint. When you see them walking or using a shoulder normally, you’ll know that they are ready to go back to playing.
- If they insist on continuing to exercise, check with the doctor for movements that will not stress the injury further. Get a trainer to supervise the workouts.
- Make sure your kids gets the right nutrition that will help them heal faster.
- Help your child do all the exercises that the therapist recommends. These movements will help restore the complete range of motion and functioning of the injured joint or ligament.
- Your orthopedist might give your kids weight training exercises to do or any other workouts that can help build endurance but don’t aggravate the injured joint. Assist them in every way you can.
- With your doctor’s recommendations, you can do your bit at home by applying hot and cold packs, compression wrapping, and keeping the injured joint immobile and elevated.
Dealing with Major Injuries
Given the young age of your kids and the fact that they’re still growing, most doctors will not recommend invasive measures to treat sports injuries that can alter their tissues and anatomy. Unless the damage is very severe, doctors prefer to avoid surgery that often involves long rehabilitation and the need to stay away from sports. Add to that is the possibility that the surgery could go wrong and cause permanent disability. As a last resort before surgery, your orthopedist might ask you to consider getting PRP treatment for sports injuries.
What is PRP Therapy?
PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) therapy is a minimally invasive treatment that can help your kids recover from their injuries without the use of foreign implants and chemical injections like cortisone. The PRP serum is created from a small sample of the patient’s blood and has no additives save for epinephrine that is an anti-allergic medication. After creating the serum, doctors insert it into the affected area where it sets off a healing cascade. PRP contains a concentration of mesenchymal stem cells, growth factors, cytokines, and other healing agents that are a natural part of the body’s regenerative systems.
Patients typically report seeing a marked improvement in the pain and ease of movement within a few weeks of getting the treatment. Considering that many top athletes of the world like Tiger Woods, Rafael Nadal, Hines Ward, and others have used the therapy with amazing results, you can rest assured that it is safe for your kids also.
To help your kids with sports injuries, you might want to opt for natural treatments that are not only highly effective but also unlikely to cause any permanent changes that may affect their future growth and normal living. PRP therapy can shorten the recovery period significantly and have your kids back in the game in no time.