Homecare for a Sports Injury and When to See a Doctor

Homecare for a Sports Injury and When to See a Doctor

Physical activity isn’t just healthy for you — it’s fun, too. But whether you’re a pro or an amateur, sports activities still come with the risk of injury. The CDC says nearly 9 million sports injuries happen every year in the United States.

The good news: Many mild sports injuries can be treated at home with a bit of TLC. If you have a more severe injury, though, you need to see a doctor as soon as possible.

Dr. Joshua Harris is a top-ranked sports medicine doctor in Houston, Texas, skilled at helping athletes of all ages and all skill levels get back to the activities they love. If you’re dealing with a sports-related injury, here’s how to tell when you need to schedule a visit with Dr. Harris.

At-home care for sports injuries

Minor or mild sports injuries typically benefit from what’s called the RICE technique:

All of these steps help reduce swelling and inflammation while relieving the associated pain. You can also take over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines to reduce inflammation.

Using the RICE technique often helps minor sports injuries resolve, including injuries due to overexertion and mild strains. For minor injuries, you can expect to recover within a couple of days or so using RICE. If you’re still having symptoms, you should call the office to set up an appointment.

When you need to see a doctor

While RICE can be a good first option for truly minor injuries, more severe injuries need to be evaluated by Dr. Harris right away. You should call the office immediately if you notice these symptoms following your injury:

Severe injuries, like compound fractures, facial injuries, or concussions, require a trip to the emergency room.

Many athletes delay seeing a doctor because they’re worried the doctor will tell them they can’t play their sport. The fact is, Dr. Harris wants you to get back to your sport as quickly as possible. An early evaluation is the best way to get on the road to recovery so you can heal quickly and return to the activities you love.

Bottom line: Better safe than sorry

Not sure whether your injury needs a doctor’s attention? When it comes to your health, it’s always a good idea to err on the side of caution. Dr. Harris will evaluate your injury, your health history, and your overall wellness to determine the best approach to help you recover. To learn how he can help you, call the office or book an appointment online today.

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