Hello and welcome to Augusts first blog – The Beginners Guide to Caring for Common Injuries. I hope that you are all having a great summer full of fun and activity.
What if you’ve got a bit of an injury going on though? Is it a simple injury or something else? Read on…
Firstly, When to Get Help – Caring for Common Injuries
Sometimes you know when you have done something like twisting your ankle and think you just need to rest it to get better, but you’ve been resting it and it isn’t getting better. It’s getting worse. That is the point you visit the doctor for a further opinion, because if any injury or pain gets worse, something more could be going on, like a fracture.
Sprains and Strains
A sprain is an injury to a ligament connecting one or more bones together to provide joint stability.
A strain is when a muscle or tendon has been stretched or torn. Tendons are the fibrous cords of tissue that connect your muscles to your bones.
But how do you tell the difference between these?
A sprain commonly produces bruises, swelling, instability and painful movement and can happen simply by missing your step and turning your ankle over.
A strain is usually the result of a high velocity force acting against the muscle. A sudden movement could cause your muscle or tendon to quickly overstretch and the contract forcefully afterwards, which can lead to a mild to severe tearing of the muscle. This could happen if you’re holding a door and a gust wind wrenches it while you try to continue to hold onto it.
Caring for your Sprain
Rest your joint so that it can heal. Return to normal activities as instructed by your doctor.
Apply Ice on your injury for 15 to 20 minutes every hour or as directed. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag, covered with a towel before you apply it. Ice could help prevent tissue damage and decreases localised swelling and pain- however this could delay the healing process so use with caution.
Compress the injured area as directed. Ask your doctor if you should wrap an elastic bandage around your injured ligament. An elastic bandage provides support and helps decrease swelling and movement so your ligaments can heal.
Elevate the injured area above the level of your heart as often as you can. This will help decrease swelling and pain. Prop the injured area on pillows or blankets to keep it elevated comfortably.
Start to reuse your joint carefully and slowly.
Thank you for reading this weeks blog – The Beginners Guide to Caring for Common Injuries. Check back next week for Strain aftercare.
Alongside Sports Massage, I still offer Personal Training for you, tailored to your injury recovery and movement needs. Contact me on [email protected] to find out more.
See you soon!