If you’ve ever played a contact sport, such as hockey or football, then you know how common injuries are. Humans coming together with such force can lead to bumps, bruises, and much worse, and while protective padding and equipment has become more sophisticated over the years, injuries still happen. Players have strained muscles, broken bones, and suffered career-ending damage to their bodies. They may love to play the game and might be exceptionally skilled at it, but the cost to their bodies can be quite high. At the Colorado Spine Institute in Loveland, our team can help treat sports-related injuries and the back pain they can bring.
One common sports-related injury is a pinched nerve. If a player is struck in the back while running or skating, the vertebrae, muscles, and tendons can all be impacted, which can lead to pressure on a nerve. This can lead to pain and numbness in the back and lower extremities, and this of course can keep the player off the field or the ice for some time. We will recommend the best treatment options based on the severity of the injury. Most people recover within a few days, but again, the recovery time will be based on the level of impact and injury the patient sustained. It will be important not to aggravate the injury while your body is healing.
Many professional athletes have suffered from herniated discs, and not all played contact sports (think of golf and the repetition of swinging a club). Repetitive motion and trauma can cause the disc to weaken, which causes the softer interior to “slip” through a crack in the harder exterior. This can cause severe pain, numbness, and weakness in the back. A herniated disc can occur anywhere in the spine, and treatment can consist of rest, pain medication, anti-inflammatories, and more. Surgery can be an option, but is usually only recommended after weeks of other treatments that yielded little to no results. We will advise you on the best approach to treating a herniated disc in your spine.
Returning to the Game
An athlete who has been sidelined by a spinal injury can feel anxious about whether or not he or she will return to the game they love. If you’ve been injured, it’s important to seek medical treatment and advice as soon as possible, and with the right mindset and an expert team to help you, the chances of you playing again at the level to which you’re accustomed will increase. Trying to “play through the pain” can often lead to more severe pain and further bodily injury, so if you’re experiencing discomfort or limited mobility, please contact us right away. We will be honest with you about the severity of your injury, and give you a reasonable prognosis on your chances of playing your sport again. We know that it can difficult to give your body time to heal, but with patience and proper treatment, you’ll be back on the field before you know it.