Orthopedic Sports Medicine for People Who Don’t Play Sports

April 30th, 2018 Becki Andrus
Orthopedic Sports Medicine

Orthopedic sports medicine isn’t just for professional athletes. In fact, it’s not just for people who play sports on the weekend, either. Assuming you do any amount of walking in your life, it’s likely that you’ll have a run in with orthopedic sports medicine at some point. Hopefully, you won’t need too much of it, though.

Orthopedic Sports Medicine for the Unathletic Person

It’s pretty easy to see why orthopedics might be relevant to your life, even if you aren’t active. Orthopedics cover almost every injury that can come up. So, even if you aren’t dealing with a torn ACL, you might see your orthopedist for an ankle sprain that you got when you were walking on a slippery surface. Orthopedic sports medicine, though, seems like something only the most active people would need.

In fact, orthopedics probably become more relevant to your life when you’re less active. Office work, for example, has an enormous amount of health risks associated with it. Too much time spent sitting at work might raise your cholesterol levels, and too much time at a computer can easily lead to arthritis. Decide to start working out again, and you might have some issues crop up in your life. As we’ve discussed before, it’s not uncommon for a rusty and over-confident gym goer to wind up visiting their orthopedist. One bad push up can do a lot more damage than you’d think.

What is Orthopedic Sports Medicine?

Orthopedic Sports MedicineSports medicine is a somewhat confusing term. It doesn’t actually refer to any medical specialty, but instead the use of rehabilitation methods that best support the injured person. Sports medicine’s major goal is to get the patient back to activity in the shortest amount of time possible. This often requires not one doctor, but a series of them.

In fact, sports medicine often requires people who aren’t doctors at all. The most common of these is a physical therapist, who works with the patient to return muscle strength when the doctors have deemed it okay. Other non-traditional doctors might join the fray, as well. Many sports medicine patients find themselves accompanied by a nutritionist, as diet is incredibly important to proper recovery.

So, where do orthopedists slot in? Orthopedists tend to take on the bulk of diagnosis. An orthopedist working in sports medicine will closely examine the patient, and create a treatment plan that is best for them. They tend to be conservative in their treatment methods, as any loose action can cause further damage to their patient. Orthopedic sports medicine doctors are, by necessity, very knowledgeable about anything that might pop up. If they don’t know everything about an injury, they have the resources to learn.

Orthopedic sports medicine doctors also have to have an in-depth knowledge of their patient, and their goals. The goal of sports medicine is to return the patient to the level of activity they desire in the shortest amount of time possible. Obviously, the goal posts shift with the patient. A professional football player has different needs from an amateur baseball player. A hiker will need different care as well, while a person who doesn’t do much active will need something entirely different. Whatever it is, it is the job of the orthopedic sports medicine doctor to return the patient to normality.

When Might You Need Orthopedic Sports Medicine?

So, why would someone who isn’t an athlete need sports medicine?

The biggest reason is a severe injury, often caused by a car crash or similar impact. If a person has received several broken bones, brain injury, or major nerve damage they will need sports medicine. Generally, you can consider anything that requires physical rehabilitation to be under the sports medicine umbrella.

Of course, there are needs for orthopedic sports medicine that aren’t so severe. You might need to see a sports medicine doctor if you are suffering arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis, asthma, or an eating disorder. If you are coping with or have recently had a concussion, ankle sprain, fracture, knee or shoulder injury, or cartilage damage, it is recommended that you go to a sports medicine specialist. While most doctors can handle these problems, sports medicine doctors will provide the best care.

What Can Orthopedic Sports Medicine Do for You?

If you aren’t looking to get back on the field, orthopedic sports medicine will help you return to normalcy. You know as much as I do that staying off of an injured ankle for several weeks is no fun at all. You hunger to get back to whatever you did before, even if it’s just a daily shower. An orthopedic sports medicine doctor knows how to get you up and ready to go as quickly as possible.

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