Whether you are a dedicated athlete or simply enjoy sports in your spare time, the possibility of sustaining an injury is always present due to the physical stress and contact of many types of sports.
From a sprained ankle to a broken arm, sports injuries range in severity, and all of them can lead to lasting symptoms if not properly addressed. This is why having a quality sports injury doctor close to your home is so important.
A sports injury doctor is any physician who works with injuries sustained from athletic activity.
Fractures, breaks, sprains, torn ligaments, and dislocations are all common types of injuries that can occur from playing sports or exercising. A top-quality sports injury doctor can diagnose the type of injury you have and design a customized treatment plan that gets you on the path to healing.
Who Is Considered a Sports Injury Doctor?
Something many people don’t realize is that many different types of doctors can treat an athletic injury. The following are just a few specialists who can address sports-related injuries.
While your family doctor may not technically be considered to be a sports injury doctor, they are a necessary step in the healing process. Your general physician can provide an initial assessment of your injury and determine what type of specialist will provide the most fitting treatment.
One of the most effective ways to address an athletic injury is through physical therapy. Physical therapists use non-invasive, non-surgical methods to strengthen your bones and muscles, helping you make a full recovery from many different types of injuries.
A physical therapist is ideal for sprains, dislocations, and healing after a broken bone. Your physical therapist will guide you through personalized stretches and exercises that aim to restore your proper muscle strength and tissue alignment.
Many people see a physical therapist for an extended period at regular intervals, such as one to two times a week for six months. Your duration of treatment will depend on the severity of your injury.
Another specialist who frequently addresses sports injuries is an orthopedist. They work with conditions of the bones and muscles. These doctors can perform a wide variety of diagnostics to determine the source of your symptoms and develop a thorough treatment plan. Orthopedists treat almost any area of the body, but they often work with the arms and legs.
For severe breaks, you may need to see an orthopedic surgeon. These surgical specialists can provide the proper treatment to help your bone heal correctly after an athletic injury.
If you injure your foot, toe, or ankle during athletic activity, you may need to see a podiatrist. They work specifically with conditions of the feet. These doctors can address broken toes, ankle sprains, and damaged tissues within the foot.
A podiatrist can also provide custom footwear, such as ankle bracing or shoe inserts, to help heal certain injuries.
When you are looking for non-surgical intervention for certain types of sports injuries, you may want to see a chiropractor. Chiropractors provide manual adjustment of the bones in your arms, legs, and spinal column. They are a popular choice for spinal misalignment and dislocations.
Something important to consider when working with a chiropractor is the nature of your injury and the method of adjustment. Sometimes chiropractic treatment can do more harm than good. This harm happens when an adjustment is performed incorrectly or in the wrong spot, leading to exacerbated pain and discomfort.
You should be especially careful when treating neck injuries, as this can lead to nerve damage in the cervical spine.
One type of specialist that may be overlooked when searching for sports injury treatment is a holistic medicine doctor. Holistic doctors specialize in natural approaches to a wide variety of health concerns, from chronic conditions to acute illnesses.
A holistic medicine specialist can use natural methods to address your athletic injuries without prescription medications or surgical intervention.
What to Consider When Choosing a Sports Injury Doctor
If you’re looking for a doctor to treat your athletic injuries, you will need to consider several factors in order to choose the best provider for your needs. These factors include everything from experience to location.
When looking for a doctor for your athletic injury, you will want to choose someone who has relevant experience. Your doctor should be qualified to treat the type of injury you have.
For example, a podiatrist only treats conditions of the foot, ankle, or toes. If you have an injury higher on the leg, such as a torn calf muscle or knee dislocation, an orthopedist is a better choice.
Another thing to consider when choosing a sports injury doctor is the services they can provide. Do they offer surgical procedures? Are their services strictly non-invasive? Do they use natural, holistic methods?
Your injury may require specific treatment to heal properly. You need to choose a doctor who can provide the best treatment possible to address your injury.
One of the most important factors to consider when looking for a sports injury doctor is their location. You want to choose a doctor whose office is in your general area so that you don’t need to commute far for treatment.
Athletic injuries often require a series of multiple visits spread out over time. Having a doctor in your area will make your recovery process much more convenient.
Treating Sports Injuries
Are you looking for a top-quality sports medicine doctor near you? There are various ways to treat sports injuries, from physical therapy to chiropractic adjustments. Finding the right sports injury doctor can make the difference between chronic pain and proper healing.
If you injure yourself playing sports or exercising, speak with your general practitioner or other provider about what type of specialist is the best choice to meet your needs.