What is Chronic Pain?
Chronic pain injuries are associated with injuries in sports that are slowly developed and persistent, as well as long-lasting. It is most often tendon related injuries that cause chronic pains, such as tennis elbow or shin splints. Chronic pain generally feels painful whenever it is moving, with a dull ache while resting. It is also usually accompanied by swelling of the injured area. It is considered best to get treated by a doctor, though there are some injuries that can be taken care of at home. There is a method called 'RICE' that most athletes use to test if they can stay home, or if they need to call a doctor to look at their injury. Some telltale signs that professional care is needed include severe pain, swelling or numbness from the injury, the inability to put any weight on the area, the joint doesn't feel stable or if an old injury starts swelling, hurting or aching. There are a few basic sports injuries that lead to chronic pain, including Tendinitis, that must be treated professionally in order to ensure no further injury to the area.
What are the Most Common Forms of Chronic Pain?
There are many contributing factors in the development of chronic pain. These types of injuries are called overuse pain and injury. The biggest cause among athletes is over training syndrome. This means they are doing a lot of exercise, but not allowing themselves ample resting periods to recover. It is even common among advanced exercisers, as they might try to increase their time or intensity too abruptly. Sometimes, overeager athletes are raring to make up for lost time after an injury, and do too much of a work out or play too intensely, or before the injury has even healed altogether. It is also common to see new exercisers try to do too much before they have trained enough. Chronic pain can be caused by doing only one type of exercise, as the same repetitive movements can overwork the muscle and cause injuries or pain. The use of a poor technique has been the downfall of many. For instance, if a golfer swings poorly, they are more likely to get hurt than one that swings the correct way. It is also important to ensure the athlete is wearing the correct shoes, and properly fitted equipment. Even the terrain that one exercises or plays in can cause chronic pains if it isn't properly maintained.
'RICE' is an acronym that many athletes remember. It stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. When resting, one should ensure they are properly resting. They must not be messing with anything that could cause extra stress to them. They should not be involved in any strenuous activities. The goal is to reduce the stress and activity level of the muscles so they may heal. Some use crutches to get around, in the event of an injured foot. Ice is self-explanatory. Simply take a zip lock bag, and fill it with ice. Apply the ice to the injured area for around 20 minutes, 4 to 8 times each day. This will relax the muscles, as well as bring down any swelling of the area. Compression is all about the pressure. One can put pressure on the area to reduce swelling, as well as pain to some degree. There are a variety of options for compressing, such as an ace bandage or sling, however a doctor would best know what to do for each particular injury. Finally, elevation. When resting or recovering, keeping the injured area heightened to a level above the heart is highly recommended. It takes a lot of stress and pressure off the area, which can reduce pain greatly.
How Do I Prevent Chronic Pain?
Preventing chronic pain isn't the hardest thing in the world. It can be fairly simple to ensure that one is safe during impact sports, as well as various other activities that utilize the muscles and tendons. The most important thing to ensure is that one wears properly fitting equipment, including shoes and other tools of the game. They must also check that they are using the proper form when playing. There are particular ways to tackle other players, as well as to swing a baseball bat as opposed to a golf club. The specifics are important to the game, as well as exercise. Properly performing is the best way to keep from developing chronic pain and injury.