Watching your kid play sports is probably the most amazing thing a parent gets to do. Sharing in their triumphs, lessons, and heartbreak while teaching them life’s valuable lessons every chance you get. Sports is a national past time and kids get a chance to find their hero’s and try to be MVP’s themselves in their chosen sport. It’s a magical part of parenting that no one wants to miss!
However, there are a few hiccups in this dreamy version of kids’ sports. Sometimes kids get hurt! Injuries do happen. It’s just a part of playing the game and while it’s a difficult time to deal with, it happens to them all at some time or another. As a parent, of course you want to know how to help them when they’re hurt. Whether it’s a minor injury like muscle strain or a major injury like a concussion, knowing how to help your child through it will make a huge difference for both of you.
Here are the top four sports injuries in kids, as well as how to heal them:
1. Muscle strains. Usually these fall in the “minor injury” category and happen with over-exertion. Apply Ice every 20 minutes for the first 24-48 hours after the incident. This will reduce the pain and swelling significantly.
2. Shin splints. Also mild but very painful. It’s best to Ice the shins several times a day for at least 3 days. Mild stretching will help considerably, as well as, ibuprofen or Advil in moderation and working with a physical therapist.
3. Concussions. Rest, rest, rest. Our brain and body recover during sleep. Make sure to wait an hour or so before sleeping though. Be sure to get plenty of fluids and take Tylenol in moderation to ease the pain.
4. Ligament Tears. The best treatment for this very common but serious injury, is the R.I.C.E treatment plan. Plenty of rest and care will get your kid all better in no time!
A good rule of thumb to help with any kids’ sports injury is to use the R.I.C.E treatment plan:
- Rest. Take a break from using the injured area. Use crutches or other assists as needed.
- Ice. Ice the area for the first 48-72 hours after the initial incident. Keep ice on the injury for 15 to 20 min intervals but never sleep with ice on the area.
- Compression. To reduce swelling, use compression wraps on the area as often as possible. Leave fingers and toes exposed and never sleep with the wrap on. Loosen the wrap if it’s too tight and causes numbness or discoloration.
- Elevation. Prop up the injured area, always above the heart level.
Jason Gichner is the head of the Nashville Personal Injury Department at Morgan & Morgan. With more than 15 years of trial and appellate experience, Mr. Gichner is a veteran litigator who has spent his career fighting for clients in the courtroom. He has tried over two dozen jury trials, achieving significant results for his clients.