What NOT to Do After a Sport Injury

InjuredPlayer_300As the playoffs begin, players prepare for more intense practices and games. If a player gets hurt, here are some important “don’ts” to emphasize to a young athlete:

• Don’t try to hide an injury. Report the injury to the coach or trainer.

• Don’t apply treatment other than simple first aid until a specific diagnosis has been made by the trainer or a doctor.

• Don’t apply heat to an injury without orders from the doctor. A common but mistaken belief is that heat helps a new injury. By increasing swelling, it can actually make things worse rather than better.

• Don’t use an injured part if it hurts. More pain means more injury.

• Don’t take any drugs unless they are prescribed by a physician.

• Don’t tape or splint an injured part without specific instructions from a doctor.

• Don’t go back to practice or competition until you have full range of motion, full strength (both sides are equally strong), and full function of the injured part.

The quickest and safest way to get back into active participation is to limit activity as long as there is any pain or swelling, then to follow rigidly a prescribed rehabilitation program, which will include a schedule of special exercises.

Editor’s Note: For more information please refer to the Minnesota Hockey Sports and Your Child booklet.

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