Handling Your Sports Injuries
If you sit for hours at a desk, typing and staring at a computer screen, you can expect to develop certain problems like poor circulation, eye strain, improper posture, or nerve damage. So it’s better to be active, right? Right! Except—playing sports can come with its own difficulties. People who are physically active can expect to see an increase in certain common problems known as sports injuries—although you don’t need to be an athlete to experience many of them. Let’s look at a few ways you can hurt your feet and ankles.
These occur almost immediately from a single damaging event. For example, you are running on the football field and twist your ankle in a gopher hole. Ankle sprains are one of the most common injuries in field sports or any game that has you switching directions or landing from jumps, like basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, and more.
Turf toe is a common sprain that happens when the big toe is overextended and sprained. Cleats can dig into the field and trap your toe against the ground as you push off for a sprint. The ligaments in the capsule around the main toe joint are overstretched and the joint will swell and stiffen up.
You may collide with another player or someone might land hard on your foot. The impact could cause severe bruising or lead to a foot fracture. Stubbing your toe or kicking a hard object could break a toe, too. Sometimes a traumatic event can dislocate the bones in a joint, which causes severe pain on its own, but may also lead to nerve compression with its related symptoms of sharp pain, tingling, or numbness.
Some conditions develop more slowly over time as repeated motions irritate and damage tissues. One common one is plantar fasciitis. This involves the strong ligament under your foot that connects your heel and toe bones and helps support your arch. Tight tendons and calf muscles put too much tension on this tissue, causing it to become irritated and inflamed. Over time, the plantar fascia can deteriorate and tear, resulting in sharp pain under the heel. Rest and stretching are the best home remedies for this problem.
A similar problem can occur with the strong tendon at the back of your ankle, causing a painful overuse injury called Achilles tendinitis or tendinosis. As it deteriorates over time, the tendon may end up rupturing during a game or practice.
Friction and Pressure Injuries
Sports shoes can also lead to certain injuries if they do not fit properly. Some common examples are painful ingrown toenails, especially from shoes with tight toes that press the soft tissue against the nail at the side. Blisters often form at the back of the heel from shoes that cause friction and shear on your skin.
Your particular biomechanics can be a source of sports injuries as well. When bones in your forefoot move incorrectly during your gait, they can press against or entrap the nerves running between them. This can cause pain in the ball of your foot known as metatarsalgia, and tingling or numbness in the toes.
Your Source for Sports Injury Treatment in Hawthorne, CA
At Far West Podiatric Medical Group we see and treat many types of sports injuries in feet and ankles. Our goal is to find a way to relieve your pain without surgery. Some of the conservative treatments we recommend at home are rest, icing, elevating the foot to reduce swelling, proper use of pain relievers (we’ll help you figure out what type and dose are best for you), and stretching.
Many patients find pain relief with custom orthotics designed to treat their biomechanical issues, or physical therapy to recondition muscles and tendons. Minimally invasive healing aids include injections for pain and inflammation. In the event it is needed, our board-certified surgeons can perform surgical procedures of all types to repair broken bones, torn tendons and ligaments, and damaged nerves.
Next time your active life results in an injury or foot pain, dial 310-675-0900 to schedule an appointment at Far West Podiatric Medical Group and start your steps to healing in the quickest but safest way possible. You can also use our online form to schedule with our office in Hawthorne, CA.
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