Sports medicine doctors aren’t only for pro athletes. They can help anyone who injures themselves playing a sport. Here are four reasons to go see a sports medicine doctor.
Imagine you’ve just injured your shoulder playing a pick-up game of basketball. Or maybe that nagging pain in your elbow from weekend golf is making you avoid the links. You know you need treatment, but do see a primary care physician or an orthopedist? Actually, the specialist you should dial up is a sports medicine doctor.
Sports medicine isn’t only for professional athletes. Sports medicine doctors treat anyone who has sustained an injury to their bones, muscles, or tendons. And that can happen whether you’re a pro or you’re just playing sports in your off-hours. It can even happen without any sports at all! Instead of waiting for the pain to go away, you should see a sports medicine doctor right away. Here are four great reasons why.
4 reasons to see a sports medicine doctor
According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, more than 1,800 MDs practice sports medicine in the U.S. Sports medicine doctors specialize in helping patients overcome injuries to the back, knee, shoulders, and elbow. Whether it’s a broken bone or sprained ankle, a sports medicine doctor can get you back on the playing field. These specialists can help you:
Recover from an injury. Sports medicine doctors can treat everything from a sudden trauma, such as an Achilles tendon tear, to an overuse injury, like golfer’s elbow. They use their expertise to diagnose the injury and map out a treatment plan. Therapy could include splinting the injured joint and prescribing pain medications. The doctor may also oversee a physical therapy program to promote healing and increase mobility. Although conservative methods are always tried first, your sports medicine doctor may recommend surgery in some instances. By using these and other innovative techniques, a sports medicine physician can shorten your recovery time and get you back to full mobility faster.
Prevent another injury. After recovering from a serious injury, the last thing you want is to get re-injured and have to go through all of that pain and rehab again. Unfortunately, many sports injuries are easily repeated. People who sustain a rotator cuff tear, for example, are vulnerable to suffering the same injury again. A sports medicine doctor can determine what may be making you susceptible to certain injuries so you can take targeted steps to say safe. You may need to change your warm up routine or get instructions on how to safely train for an athletic event. A sports medicine doctor can give that guidance.
Enhance your performance. No matter whether you play sports professionally or casually, you always want to perform at your peak, but that isn’t always possible. Maybe you’ve started feeling too exhausted to start playing or you tire out in the middle of the workout. A sports medicine doctor can investigate what might be making you sluggish: Are you getting enough nutrients in your diet? Is there another condition holding back your performance? Answering questions like these can get you back to performing at your best.
Customize a treatment plan. A sports medicine doctor will work with you on what you want to accomplish with your workouts: Do you want to lose weight? Increase your endurance? Perfect your technique? Avoid injury? Whatever your goal, your sports medicine physician will customize a holistic treatment plan to help you reach it. They can also call on other professionals as needed, such as dietitians and physical therapists, to make sure you get holistic treatment that helps you recover and avoid injuries in the future.
Injured? We can help
At New York Bone & Joint Specialists, we work with each patient to ensure they recover from a sports injury or nagging joint pain as quickly and painlessly as possible. Our team of sports medicine doctors and physical therapists will develop a tailored plan to relieve your pain and get you up and moving again fast. Contact us today for a consultation.