5 Tips to Recognize Overuse Injuries in Youth Sports

young football players on field

Does your child love to play sports? If so, that’s not surprising! Sports activities are great for getting exercise, blowing off steam, and just having fun.

Sports do cause injuries though, so it’s important to be careful. But sometimes athletes and sports participants practice caution, injuries still happen.

Children are especially prone to injuries as they gain coordination through their growing years. Because of this, it’s important to keep an eye out for overuse injuries.

How do you spot overuse injuries in sports? Keep reading for five ways to recognize them.

1. Pay Attention

Overuse injuries don’t start out as obvious as a sprain or fracture. Instead, they’ll appear as less severe issues.

To catch an overuse injury when it occurs, you’ll have to pay attention to your child. And he’ll need to pay attention to his body and how it’s functioning.

Anything out of the ordinary, even a small ache or pain, may be the beginning of an injury.

2. Pain during Activity

If your child is experiencing pain while she’s playing sports, she may have an overuse injury. It’s natural for muscles to strain while participating in physical activity, but pain may also mean there’s a problem.

Check with your child often to assess how she feels while she’s playing. Encourage her to let you know if she’s ever in pain while she participates in sports.

3. Pain after Activity

If your child experiences pain that lingers after physical activity, he may have an overuse injury. Paying attention is helpful here. Your child will need to identify if the pain was there before the activity began.

4. Decreased Performance

If your child loves sports, there’s a good chance you’ve watched him play a lot. If so, you’ll be familiar with his performance. If you or your child start to notice a decrease in his abilities or performance, that may be a sign of an overuse injury.

5. Persistent Pain

Your child may experience pain after sports that eventually wears off. While that may or may not be from an overuse injury, persistent pain may be an indication of one.

Pain that continues while your child is resting is one of the more obvious symptoms of an overuse injury. Don’t hesitate to visit a doctor if this is occurring.

Spot Overuse Injuries As Soon as Possible

There are ways to prevent overuse injuries, including resting and playing a variety of sports instead of just one. But even then, injuries may occur. Keep these five signs in mind to catch overuse injuries as soon as you can.

Once you’ve discovered overuse injuries you can take steps toward healing and preventing them in the future.

Do you suspect your child has an overuse injury? Visit us today to see how we can help.