Sports Injury Clinic in Santa Monica, CA
What are Sports Injuries?
Sports injuries do not just happen to athletes—they can happen to any person who goes out for a walk or a jog. It's easy to injure the soft tissues in your lower body because your feet absorb a tremendous amount of stress during physical activity. Even simple everyday activities like walking on uneven surfaces or climbing stairs can damage the ligaments, tendons and muscles in your feet. Exercise is a pivotal part of weight management, cardiovascular health and maintaining overall health, so getting back to exercising safely after an injury is a high priority.
Sports-related foot injuries can range from mildly irritating to something more serious that may require physical therapy or even surgery. Because your feet are responsible for supporting the weight of your entire body, there are many problems caused by foot impact during exercise and sporting events.
Common foot conditions and injuries encountered during physical activity or exercise include:
- Sprains/strains: These injuries occur when ligaments in the foot stretch or tear.
- Stress fractures: Fractures occur when there is a crack in the bone.
- Contusions: Also called a bruise, contusions occur when blood vessels are damaged or broken as the result of a blow to the skin.
- Tendonitis: Tendons are strong, cord-like bands of tissue that connect muscles to bones; when they are worked too hard or in the wrong way, tiny tears develop in the tendon that cause pain and discomfort.
- Bursitis: Caused by overuse and repetitive movements, this condition occurs when the bursa, a small sac of fluid, swells. The bursa is responsible for lubricating areas where the tendons, ligaments muscle and bone rub against each other.
Ill-fitting shoes often cause these problems, although factors like age and weight also contribute to your chances of sustaining a foot injury. You might also suffer one or more of these injuries due to repeated overuse, such as ongoing athletic activities. In this case, small amounts of stress on the body accumulate slowly but steadily, resulting in pain and long-term damage.
Prevention and Treatment of Sports Injuries
It's important to pay close attention to your body's warning signs—if something hurts, don't ignore it. Taking preventive measures is also an important part of proper foot care. Although specific sports require different warm-up activities, it's important to stretch thoroughly before any workout. It's also important to stop the activity before you become exhausted. Fatigue and pain are usually signs that you are pushing too hard.
Podiatric treatment is a vital part of getting athletes safely back into competition as soon and as safely as possible. Your doctor will start by gathering a detailed patient history and conducting a thorough physical examination of the affected foot or feet. During the diagnosis process, your doctor may also include an x-ray or an MRI, depending on the extent of the injury sustained.
Treatment options for foot injuries vary greatly depending upon the specific injury, but treatment typically includes some combination of padding, strapping, taping and physical therapy. Custom foot orthotics may also be recommended to improve walking function, and prescription medications may be used to alleviate any pain. The doctor may also suggest correct shoe or cleat selection and he or she may evaluate abnormal gait to help prevent any future problems. With more severe injuries, surgery may be advised or recommended.
Request more information about sports injury treatment today. Call (424) 365-1800 or contact Vitality Integrative Medicine online.
Vitality Integrative Medicine
Address4849 Van Nuys Blvd
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Tue: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Wed: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Thu: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Fri: 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am - 12:00 pm