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Back to School - Back to Sports

As the days get shorter and the temperature cools, outdoor activities once again take off. If you participate in organized sports or are just the weekend warrior type, there are some common problems you may be unlucky enough to encounter. Here are just a few. .

Sprained Ankle This occurs when a ligament in the ankle is stretched beyond its normal range. Most ankle sprains require protection during the healing process, usually 4 to 6 weeks. Muscle Strain Most often this will occur to muscles in the lower back and can be quite painful. Usually this is caused by heavy lifting, twisting or any sudden movements. The pain is usually localized in the lower back and does not extend down into the legs. Resolution may take days or weeks depending on the severity. Hamstring Strain This occurs when the muscle in the back of the thigh is extended under a load bearing condition. Lack of proper warmup, fatigue and poor conditioning are preconditions for this type of strain. These usually heal well.

Shin Splints These are injuries to the front of the leg below the knee. They can be very painful. They can occur with both runners and walkers. Most often they are associated with a sudden increase in intensity or distance. Stretching and decreased activity will usually resolve the splints in a couple of weeks. Rotator Cuff Problems These usually involve tendonitis or tears in the tendons of the shoulder. Caused by weak muscles or improper exercise form can bring on these problems. If not allowed to heal, the condition may require surgery.

Tennis Elbow This is an irritation of the tendons in the elbow due to injury caused by repetitive motion. It may be very painful and usually requires time off to heal. Knee Problems These may come in 2 forms, tendonitis or torn cartilage. Overstretched tendons may be supported and allowed to heal provided they are not torn. Torn tendons and cartilage will likely require surgery to restore full function to the knee.

Planter Fasciitis This inflammation of the fibrous tissue on the bottom of the foot occurs in activities involving walking, running or jumping. Proper arch supports and daily stretching exercises can resolve this condition. All of these conditions are painful, and most of them are preventable. If you are interested in prevention, treatment, or rehabilitation, Alex Orthopedic, Inc. has a product that will meet your needs.

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