Youth Sport Safety Month April 4, 2019
Youth Sports Safety Month has been observed since April 2001 – and that’s because nearly twenty years ago a Massachusetts mother lobbied for it after her daughter sustained a debilitating back injury that ended her promising tennis career.
According to Safe Kids Worldwide (SKW), more than 1.2 million kids require emergency room care for sports-related injuries every year – that means that more than 3,300 kids get injured in sports-related incidents each day. This April is a great time to learn more about kids, teens and sports injuries, as well as what steps can be taken to prevent and limit them from happening.
Sports Injuries in Kids and Teens – and How to Avoid Them
There are three main types of sports injuries that are common in kids and teens. They are:
- Overuse injuries: injuries caused by repetitive motions, or ones that repeatedly put too much stress or pressure on a person’s bones and/or tissues;
- Acute injuries: acute injuries are ones that happen immediately and are typically trauma-related, and:
- Reinjuries: people experience reinjuries when they return to a sport before a previous injury healed properly
KidsHealth reports that some of the most common overuse injuries are swimmer’s shoulder (caused by repetitive overhead motions like throwing a ball or swimming), shin splints (these are typically related to running), anterior knee pain (kneecap discomfort and pain), “little league” elbow (another throwing-related condition), and spondylosis. Spondylosis is a condition that causes chronic lower area back pain, and can be caused by a variety of sports.
Because reinjuries are usually associated with returning too quickly to a sport, ensuring that kids and teens take their time to get back into action is essential. To avoid these, think of the saying: “better safe than sorry”. There are lots of different types of acute injuries that kids and teens are prone to, like:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), such as brain hemorrhages and skull fractures;
- Eye injuries (e.g. blood in the eye, detached retinas, and scratched corneas), and:
- Spinal cord injuries
One of the most effective ways to avoid preventable acute injuries is to make sure that participants use proper safety equipment. Wearing protective equipment (like goggles or safety glasses, mouth guards, etc.) can drastically reduce an individual’s chances for sustaining certain sports-related injuries.
A Few More Recommendations…
Some other ways to prevent sports-related injuries include:
- Make sure you tell your child’s coach or gym teacher know about issues he or she has, such as asthma and allergies;
- Stay hydrated;
- Watch out for the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses, like heat exhaustion and heat stroke;
- Warm up before playing sports, which includes stretching!
- If a kid or teen is injured, do not encourage them to play – no matter how important a game may be;
- If your child or teenager reports having a sports injury, seek medical attention.
Want to learn more ways to avoid sports-related injuries in kids and teens? Visit https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/sports-safety.html.
Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyers at Galfand Berger, LLP Representing Injured Individuals Since 1947
Feel free to contact a skilled personal injury lawyer in Philadelphia at Galfand Berger if you have any additional questions about a sport-related injury. Our offices are located in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading and we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. To schedule a consultation, call us at 800-222-8792 or complete our online contact form.