If you are a football player, you likely already know that injuries are a common occurrence with the game of football. After all, you are slamming into other people in play after play and drive after drive. But what you might not know is what to expect when you have been significantly injured while playing football. Get to know some of the steps that you will most likely need to take to get yourself back out on the field in top shape. Then, you can be sure you are prepared if you ever have a significant football-related injury.
Expect to Be Seen by Your Athletic Trainer Right Away
On the field, you will receive a quick triage and assessment by your athletic trainer. They will determine whether or not your injury is severe enough to have to send you with EMTs to the hospital in the ambulance that waits at every game.
If your injury is not severe enough for an immediate emergency room visit, your trainer will take you off the field and assess you further. They can help determine the type of injury you have and how bad it might be, and they can provide immediate treatments like heat packs, ice, first aid, and the like.
You May Continue Therapy with Your Athletic Trainer or Be Referred Elsewhere
Athletic trainers are medical professionals who specialize in sports medicine, so the care they provide treatments and therapies both on the field and after the fact. If your injury is mild to moderate, the athletic trainer will likely be your primary sports medicine injury therapy provider.
However, if your injury does not improve with continued visits to the athletic trainer or it is severe, you will be referred to a sports medicine doctor. The doctor will have the skills and resources to better assess your injury (using X-rays, MRIs, etc.) and can provide treatments such as prescription medication, corticosteroid injections, and more. They can also get you set up with a physical therapist to work with in the recovery process.
Expect to Be Off the Field for at Least a Week or Two
When you have had a significant injury playing or practicing football, your body will need time to heal. Going back on the field too soon will put you at risk of worsening your injury and even doing permanent damage to your body.
As such, you need to listen to your trainer and/or sports medicine doctor and physical therapist. They will give you a return-to-play timeline that you need to follow (usually at least a week). Your physical therapist will ensure that you do exercises to improve your injury and return you to playing shape.
Now that you know more of the facts about what to expect when you are injured playing football, you can be better prepared if and/or when you sustain an injury.
To learn more, contact a resource like Town Center Orthopaedic Associates, P.C..