Treatments

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Treatments

There are many types of sporting injuries that can often be treated quickly and effectively...

Treatments

A common treatment for many soft tissue injuries is the RICE method:

Rest; continued use of the damaged muscle will cause even more damage and make the recovery time longer,

Ice; when applied will reduce swelling and pain,

Compressing; the area will provide support,

Elevating; the part of the body injured will decrease the circulation and enable blood and other fluids that cause swelling to be removed from the injured area,

Skin injuries, also known as abrasions, may be painful but not dangerous.

Examples of abrasions:

Layers of skin being stripped off,

Skin tears,

Punctures.

Treatment:

  1. Assess the damage.
  2. In most cases clean and dress the wound.
  3. Larger and deeper cuts may need treatment at a hospital where stitching of the injury may be required.
  4. It is always important, especially when blood is strongly pumping out of a cut, that the flow of blood is stopped by applying pressure and medical help found.

Muscles can be damaged internally by applying too much force when moving the body or an external object.

Under this extreme pressure, some of the muscle fibres are torn or ruptured, causing localised pain.

Treatment:

  1. Carryout RICE procedure.
  2. The damaged muscle repairs itself, usually within about seven days.

Ligaments hold joints together and tendons attach muscles to bones.

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Both can be injured when excessive force is applied to them.

In extreme cases both can rupture and will require extensive medical treatment.

Treatment:

RICE can be used for minor injuries of both tendons and ligaments.

In more serious cases medical treatment is needed.

Dislocation is the joint of a limb breaking apart.

Extreme pressure on the joint, such as an awkward landing, can cause the joint to separate.

Dislocation of the joint can also damage soft tissue around the joint such as ligaments, tendons or muscles.

Treatment:

Medical treatment is needed for this injury.

Bones, because of their rigid structure can be broken.

There are different types of fracture:

  1. Simple fractures - the bone is broken cleanly and does not pierce the skin.
  2. Compound fractures - parts if the bone come through the surface of the skin.
  3. Greenstick fractures - this often occurs in young children where the bones are soft and do not break cleanly.

Bones heal themselves over time.

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Treatment:

If a fracture is suspected, the person should be kept warm and comfortable until medical help arrives.

These can range from cuts and bruises to more serious skull fractures.

The person may suffer from concussion or in some cases be unconscious.

The person may become dizzy, feel sick or become confused, starting with a loss of memory.

Treatment:

Medical help must be sought for all head injuries.

In sports, certain conditions can occur which are not classified as injuries but still need to be attended to:

Hyperventilation,

Shock,

Hypothermia,

Hyperthermia and heat stroke,

Exhaustion,

Asthma attack.

Hyperventilation

Excessive exercise or over anxiety can cause breathing to be speeded up, exhaling large amounts of carbon dioxide from the lungs.

Treatment:

The person must be calmed down.

Breathing into a paper bag helps the breathing rate to be restored to normal.

Shock

Being involved in an accident, even if not injured can bring about shock in a person.

They may look pale, have a rapid pulse or shallow breathing, yawn excessively and appear at the point of collapse.

Treatment:

  1. Remove the cause of shock if possible.
  2. Keep the person warm, lie them down with their head down if possible.
  3. Send for medical help.

Hypothermia

Being outside in cold, windy conditions or being submersed in cold water can cause the body temperature to drop below 35 degrees Celsius (normally 37 degrees Celsius).

Treatments

The person may shiver, look pale and slightly blue, with slow shallow breathing and a weak pulse.

Treatment:

  1. Move the person out of the adverse conditions, particularly out of the wind.
  2. Insulate them with extra clothing especially the head.
  3. Give warm, not hot drinks if they are conscious.
  4. Call for medical help under extreme conditions.

Hyperthermia

This is when the temperature of the body rises above 39 degrees Celsius.

When sweating becomes excessive too much salt and water can be lost, this can lead to heat exhaustion. As a result, dehydration can occur which in turn can lead to heat stroke when the body loses its ability to sweat and body temperature rises rapidly.

Treatment:

  1. Move to a cool, shaded and breezy place.
  2. A weak salt and water solution needs to be given.
  3. Dehydration should be treated with water to restore body fluids.

Exhaustion

Excessive effort, over time, can cause exhaustion to a point of collapse.

Treatment:

Move to a cool quiet place.

Asthma Attack

Many people suffering from asthma take part in sport and can usually control it. However, asthma attacks can occur, breathing becomes difficult and there is a shortness of breath and wheezing.

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Treatment:

Stop taking part in the activity and an inhaler should be used where possible.

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