It doesn’t matter if you are a professional athlete or an amateur weekend warrior on the sports field: it’s likely that you will benefit from services available by a sports medicine physician. All levels of fitness activity and sports participation require high function, mobility, and flexibility. A sports medicine expert helps to manage common conditions while also preventing common issues that can occur in the game.
Sports Medicine Isn’t Only for Pro Athletes
Some patients assume that sports medicine doctors only offer services for professional athletes. But the truth is that these services can also be quite helpful for people who enjoy casual activities and exercises to stay fit and maintain good health.
Regardless of the type of activities you are participating in, there is a possibility of experiencing a sports injury. A sports medicine physician is trained to work with various types of musculoskeletal and nerve conditions associated with sports participation – including injuries, joint pain, performance, and more.
Here is an overview of the types of patients who might choose to visit a sports medicine doctor:
- Average Fitness Participant: You want to lose a few pounds and feel more confident in your swimsuit this summer, which means you pay for a gym membership and start a fitness routine. If you find that pain or discomfort starts to set in from these activities, then it’s possible that you might benefit from sports medicine services.
- Weekend Warriors: Some patients are in good health overall and enjoy participating in sporting events on the weekend. For example, you might work an office job during the week, then pull out the cleats for weekend scrimmages or pick-up games. Personalized training and sports medicine care can be invaluable to help you prevent injuries when you are participating in these hobbies.
- Active Retirees: Just because you are stepping into retirement doesn’t mean you need to sit at home all day. Many people engage in a more active lifestyle in retirement because they have the time and resources to participate in their favorite hobbies or sports. Whether spending time on the golf greens or training for a marathon, consider the benefits of talking to a sports medicine expert for assistance.
- New Athletes: Are you wanting to train for your first race or get started with a new physical activity? Then a sports medicine physician can be a great resource when beginning this new training or exercise program.
- Pro Athletes: Finally, it’s easy to see how sports medicine physicians can help professional athletes. You are putting your body through a lot of training throughout the week and pushing even harder during the games. Make sure you are preventing injuries and treating any ailments as quickly as possible by consulting with a sports medicine expert.
A sports medicine doctor can help patients of all ages. Not only can these experts help with injuries from a contact sport, but they also have the specialty to assist when smaller injuries occur because of improper warmups or repetitive motion injuries.
Another common reason why a patient needs to see a sports medicine physician is because the person isn’t regularly active. Suddenly you start participating in a physical activity or sporting event. This abrupt change in movement can increase the risk of a sports injury.
How Sports Medicine Differs from General Medical Care
When you visit a general practitioner, they have the training to help with a variety of conditions – but they don’t offer the specialty experience and services that are available from a sports medicine physician.
Sports medicine providers focus on injuries relating to sporting activities specifically. Their goal is to not only assist athletes with common injuries but also to help a person get back in the game as soon as possible.
Additionally, consider that sports medicine physicians help with preventive services. Most people wait until they are sick or injured before talking to a primary care physician. On the other hand, you can visit a sports medicine doctor proactively if you would like to prevent injury and even improve your performance on the field or court.
Sports medicine physicians have experience treating conditions relating to nerve pain and musculoskeletal issues. If the injury is affecting the bones, muscles, or tendons in the back, arms, legs, or joints, then a sports medicine expert is the ideal provider to see.
Sports Medicine Physicians: Treating and Preventing Sports Injuries
There are two priorities when you talk to a sports medicine physician:
- Treating Injuries: Are you experiencing any pain, discomfort, or limited motion? Then a sports medicine physician can be a great resource to address these immediate concerns. Doctors offer support with both diagnosis and treatment to get you back in the game as soon as possible.
- Preventing Injuries: Also, consider that you don’t need to wait for an injury before talking to a sports medicine doctor. Preventive treatment can be a valuable way to help you avoid injuries in the future. If you know that you will be participating in sports, talk to a sports medicine expert to learn more about available preventive services.
Most Common Conditions Treated by Sports Medicine Physicians
Many different types of injuries can occur when you are participating in sports. Regardless of the injury type or severity, consider talking to a sports medicine physician for assistance.
Here are some of the most common conditions that sports medicine doctors often treat:
- Shoulder Injury: One throw of the ball or a hit at the wrong angle can affect the tendons and muscles in the shoulder joint. For example, rotator cuff tears are common when people participate in overhead motions, such as swinging a tennis racket or throwing a ball. A partial or full rotator cuff tear might require surgery and/or physical therapy.
- Back Pain: Most people will experience back pain at some point in their life. This pain can come on slowly due to repetitive motions that strain the back. Or one movement on the sports field could result in an acute injury resulting in back pain.
- Joint Sprains: It’s common for injury or pressure to be put on the joints when you are participating in different types of sports activities. If joint pain affects your game or takes a toll on your daily lifestyle, then talk to a sports medicine doctor for diagnosis and treatment.
Other common treatments include bone fractures, torn muscles and ligaments, and any other types of chronic pain affecting the arms, legs, neck, hips, back, and more.
Personalized Care and Support from a Sports Medicine Expert
You deserve quality care, which is why it makes sense to visit a sports medicine expert instead of a general physician. If you have acute or chronic pain or want to improve your performance on the playing field, consider scheduling a consultation with our team to learn more about available services.
At Orthopedic Associates, we are always just a phone call away. Our full-service treatment approach is available for everything from sports injuries to chronic pain and more. Call our team when you are ready to book an appointment: (972) 420-1776.