Many children enjoy participation in sports; however, without proper precautions, sports can also lead to an assortment of potentially serious injuries. As Children’s Hospital Boston reports, roughly 3 million children under 14 are injured while participating in sports annually. While you can do nothing to take all the danger out of sports, you can be aware of the injuries for which your child is at risk, and ensure that you protect against them as much as possible.
Sprains are among the most common, and most easily treatable, sports injury. Children often suffer a sprained ankle while running or sprained wrists while lifting heavy objects or catching fast-moving balls. In most cases, sprains heal naturally on their own as the damaged tendons repair themselves. If you find that your child is particularly prone to sprains, you may want to equip him with ankle or wrist braces to prevent injuries of this type.
A fracture occurs when a bone is cracked but does not completely break. These injuries commonly occur as a result of a collision, such as those experienced in contact sports, or a fall. Wearing proper padding can reduce the likelihood of fracture.
A break is more serious than a fracture. When a child experiences a break, the bone breaks all the way through. In some cases, the bone shards protrude from the skin. These injuries, like fractures, are commonly the result of a collision or fall. As with fractures, the only way to prevent a break is to wear padding and take care to exercise control when coming into contact with other athletes.
Concussions are a common sports injury about which research is constantly being performed. A concussion occurs when the brain strikes the inside of the skull. Injuries of this type can range from mild to severe and, in some cases, can even result in brain bleeding. The best way to avoid a concussion is to ensure that your child is always wearing an approved helmet and that he takes care to protect his head while playing.
The threat of sports-related spinal injuries is a concern for many parents, as spinal injuries can have potentially devastating effects. Spinal injuries come in an assortment of forms and range in seriousness. To avoid spinal injuries, athletes should develop an understanding of body mechanics and learn the basic moves associated with their sports, as these moves are designed to prevent injury during sports play.