A sports medicine physician has a unique and specific skillset. They can treat a wide range of injuries, both acute and chronic. They can also help prevent injuries from occurring in the first place. Many people see a sports medicine physician as part of their medical team to help them stay healthy and injury free. The word “sports medicine” conjures up television images of doctors treating professional athletes on the sidelines of their games. In fact, the field of sports medicine is much broader than that. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) was founded in 1954 to bring together medical doctors, university researchers, and physical educators with a common goal: to advance the health benefits and science of sport and exercise.
Today, many colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate degrees in the field of sports medicine. The programs offer students the opportunity to learn all aspects of sports medicine, including the treatment and prevention of injuries. Many students who complete these programs go on to become medical doctors, physical therapists, coaches, or other professionals who work with sports-related injuries. Sports injuries can occur in amateur athletes as well as those who are professional players. They can be due to overuse, improper training techniques, or a variety of other reasons. Those injuries can be very painful and can keep the athlete from participating in his or her favorite sport. There are a variety of treatments for sports injuries, including rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Most of these treatments are simple, but can be effective in reducing swelling and pain. In some cases, a physician may recommend using anti-inflammatory medications or other more powerful drugs to reduce inflammation and improve healing time. Depending on the nature of the injury, some injuries may require surgery to repair the damage and get the patient back in the game. These procedures can include repairing damaged ligaments, cartilage, or tendons. Minimally invasive arthroscopic surgeries are often available for those who want to recover quickly and get back in the game sooner rather than later. A good sports medicine physician will always try to repair an injury with non-surgical methods. However, they are also prepared to perform surgery if necessary.
For example, if an injured person’s knee isn’t healing properly or the pain continues to increase, then surgical repair may be required. The key to avoiding sports injuries is knowing the risks and taking precautions. Proper training, stretching, and warm-up exercises are important. It is also important to listen to your body. If a previously injured area starts to hurt again, then you should stop playing and consult a sports medicine doctor right away. The earlier you address any problems, the less likely it is that you will suffer an injury. With the help of a sports medicine specialist, you will be able to return to your favorite sport and enjoy it without worrying about injuries.