If you have suffered a sporting related injury, such as an ankle sprain, a sports medicine physician could be the solution to speed up your recovery and get you back out doing what you enjoy as soon as possible. Sports medicine isn’t just for athletes, it can be beneficial to anyone who is looking to improve their overall performance or fitness level in a safe way.
What Is A Sports Medicine Physician?
Podiatric sports medicine physicians provide medical care that specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of sports-related injuries and conditions affecting the foot and ankle. Their expertise often lies in non-surgical treatment methods and preventive care to help patients return to health and strengthen weak or vulnerable areas to prevent future injuries. Along with treating injuries, sports medicine can also help patients reach their maximum potential, so they can perform at their best and in the safest way possible. Sports medicine physicians offer appropriate conditioning and stability exercises to help you avoid foot and ankle injuries while partaking in your favorite activities.
Regardless of your fitness level, sports injuries are common, and the foot and ankle can be particularly vulnerable during physical exercise. Sports medicine physicians are fully equipped to diagnose and treat a range of injuries and conditions caused by sudden trauma or overuse. Common foot and ankle injuries include:
A sprain is when you over-stretch or tear a ligament in your ankle. Ligaments are tough bands of tissue that connect the bones in the ankle and give it stability. Any sport that involves jumping increases your risk of an ankle sprain, but even walking on slippery or uneven surfaces can cause it. A sprained ankle can cause symptoms including swelling, pain and bruising, limited movement around the joint, tenderness, and swelling. Ankle sprains are categorized by grades 1-3 by the amount of injury sustained in the ligaments. Sprains can result in instability at the ankle making you more susceptible to future injuries as well as compromising your athletic performance.
Trauma and Fractures
A trauma or fracture in the foot or ankle usually causes immediate pain and swelling as well as difficultly walking or standing. Foot fractures can lead to nerve or blood vessel complications, and if the skin is broken, there is a risk of infection. You should seek urgent medical assistance if you suspect you have fractured a bone in your foot or ankle, even if your symptoms are mild.
The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue that runs from the toes to the heel. It supports the arch of the foot and acts as a shock absorber when you walk. When the plantar fascia is repeatedly strained, it becomes inflamed and small tears develop in the tissue. When it gets damaged, strained, or tight, plantar fasciitis is the result. Symptoms include sharp and localized heel pain and pain in the arch of the foot.
The Achilles tendon, which connects your calf muscles to the heel bone, is the largest tendon in the body. It can become inflamed from repetitive strain, leading to Achilles tendonitis. Pain is often felt in the back of the heel where the tendon attaches to the heel bone. Bone spurs may also develop when damaged tendon fibers harden at the point where they attach to the bone.
Improving Sports Performance
A sports medicine physician has an in-depth knowledge of sports science, and how different types of sports affect the muscles, bones, and soft tissues around the foot and ankle. Their expertise in how the body moves during sports play means they can provide appropriate advice and instruction to prevent injuries. Proper stretching and strengthening exercises for your particular sport or activity are also crucial to preventing injuries. Treatment plans and preventive care can be tailored to suit your needs and requirements in order to return you to your sport safely after an injury occurs and help you safely excel in the activities you enjoy.
Sports Medicine Podiatrists In Southern Texas
If you have a foot or ankle injury, or you’re looking to improve your athletic performance and fitness overall, choose the sports medicine podiatrists at The Podiatry Group of South Texas for the right kind of care. Regardless of your fitness level, and whether you’re a professional athlete or an amateur one, we can help you. For more information about our sports medicine services, call the location nearest to you or you can use our convenient and secure online appointment request form.