If you play sports, you know how easy, if not common, it is to experience an injury.
From basketball and baseball to football and soccer, the extra movement and often high-risk requirements put you in jeopardy of injuring yourself from time to time.
To help keep you healthy and to ensure a quick recovery, follow these tips, based largely on the recommendations of the NHS.
1. Help Protect Your Injury
Injuries can occur at any time and affect any part of the body. Because of this, it’s crucial that you have the support you need in case of an emergency. Examples of this can include applying an ace bandage to help keep a sprained ankle or wrist from moving until you can get medical help.
It might also mean something as simple as having a bandaid put on an open sore to help protect the problem area from being infected or further aggravated. This is an additional layer of protection that is recommended in conjunction with typical “RICE” guidelines.
2. Pause and Rest
When an injury occurs, the last thing you want to do is power through it. While it may seem noble or you really want to assist, it can do irreversible damage.
For injuries on the lower extremities, try to take your weight off of the body part by sitting or lying down. If you need to continue moving, consider using crutches or help from others to help you move along without putting that weight on your injured body part. If you have an injury on your arm or hand, it may be a bit easier to maneuver, but still, you’ll want to give the injured part-time rest to ensure no further damage is caused.
3. Limit Swelling
While this may not be the answer to all injuries, it is certainly effective for most. Icing an injured area can help to soothe pain and bring much-needed relief.
It can also help to reduce the swelling of sprains or other injuries causing inflammation. There are proper guidelines to help you ice in order to make sure it’s done properly.
You can find more information on the process here. At a glance, however, you’ll want to be sure that you do not leave the ice pack sitting for too long and avoid direct contact with your skin.
Another method to help minimize swelling? Compression. Whether doctor prescribed or an at-home remedy, try to wrap the affected area to reduce inflammation or fluid buildup that can lead to swelling.
Resting and allowing your body to heal also means elevating the injury. While this may not always be possible, such as when the injury is on the abdomen, it is crucial that you do try to elevate when you can.
The general rule of thumb is to keep the injury above heart level, which will also help to reduce swelling as the blood flow is restricted. For a hurt ankle, that can mean propping your foot up on a pillow when lying down or sitting. For your hand, it might also mean propping up the body part or holding it overhead where possible.
5. Managing the Pain
Recovering from an injury also means finding ways to cope with the pain. Luckily, there are more options than ever to manage pain. However, some you’ll want to stay away from to minimize the risk of abuse.
If you can, settle for over-the-counter pain management tools like acetaminophen or a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. Otherwise, you might choose a natural option, such as cannabis.
Cannabis is notorious for being a great, natural pain reliever, even used in extreme illnesses to manage pain. If you do opt for cannabis use, you’ll first want to confirm with your doctor that it is an appropriate tool and also adhere to measurement guidelines.
Find more information on measurements from Veriheal.
Navigating life after an injury is no fun. However, there are many tips and tricks out there to help you get better quickly. Whatever your injury might be, consider these tricks to ensure a smooth recovery. If you have any questions about your injury or specific recovery process, be sure to consult your healthcare professional.,