By Pendergast Law on September 27, 2018
Sports are a part of American life, and can be especially important for youngsters. Organized sports and athletics can instill a sense of team play, responsibility, self-confidence, fitness, and good communication. Every day, parents enroll their kids in soccer, baseball, football, ballet, and other sports, and hope that even if they don’t become the next Kobe or Ronaldo, they will at least learn some valuable life lessons and remain healthy and active.
For the most part, playing sports has no negative consequences. But sometimes, sports do result in physical damage, pain, and suffering. While scrapes and bruises are normal for children, serious injuries shouldn’t be. As a parent, you want to avoid any serious injuries to your child
There is no denying that sports can be dangerous. Sport injuries are the second leading cause of hospital visits for children and young adults. Here are some facts.
Why Are Sports Dangerous to Kids?
Sports can be dangerous to kids for a variety of reasons. For one, kids are typically less coordinated, and possess slower reaction times than adults, which leaves them vulnerable to injuries. Their bodies are more fragile and still growing. They may be reluctant or too shy to speak up if they’re scared or nervous. On the flipside, kids can be natural risk-takers, and may not consider the possibility of getting hurt, exposing themselves to dangerous situations more often.
It is really up to coaches and adults supervising the children to notice and step in if anything could cause an injury.
Commons Sports Injuries
Here are the most common sports injuries seen in kids:
- Dislocations: A joint injury that moves the ends of your bones out of position. You can dislocate an ankle, knee, shoulder, and even your jaw. A dislocated joint will present as swollen, out of place, and painful.
- ACL tears: A common injury to the connective tissue surrounding the knee. Most often happens while playing football, soccer, and basketball. It occurs when you stop suddenly, change direction very fast, slow down when running, or land badly on a jump. Symptoms present with swelling and discomfort.
- Concussions: A concussion is a brain injury caused by trauma. It presents in headaches, as well as problems with coordination and memory. Sometimes concussions can go undiagnosed.
- Fractures: A fracture is a broken bone. Fractures are pretty common in kids. A fracture presents with swelling, pain, deformity of the area, loss of function, or in an open fracture you will see a bone sticking out from beneath the skin.
- Shoulder injuries: Shoulder injuries are also common in children who are involved in sports. They will present with pain and swelling.
Can You Prevent Sports Injuries?
There are ways to mitigate sports injuries in children.
It’s important for children to have proper equipment as well as safety gear. If in doubt, ask your child’s coach about what the appropriate equipment is. Another important factor is ensuring that the playing field is appropriately maintained. A surface with holes can cause a nasty fall.
Anytime kids are playing in a group setting, there should be adult supervision. If your child is in a team sport, the coach should have adequate training, such as CPR. Make sure the coach’s values reflect your own when it comes to rules and safety. You don’t want a coach who will refuse to remove an injured player from the game or will push children beyond their physical limits.
Doing the same activity month after month can strain a developing body. Switching your child to a different sport can be helpful. Stretching is another safety measure that should be obvious, but often gets overlooked by coaches. Remember, stretched muscles are less prone to injury. Also, your child should be given time off from training for his or her body to recover.
One simple component of safety that many coaches forget is preparation. They shouldn’t send kids out to play a sport the kids have no idea about. Coaches must spend time making sure their players know what they’re doing before they show up on the field.
Lastly, remember to instill in your children that they shouldn’t play through their pain. Playing through pain is an outdated approach, and it has no place in children’s sports. Playing through pain can be detrimental to your child’s health. Pain exists for a reason — to let you know something is not right within your body. If your child complains of pain, the coach shouldn’t tell him or her to walk it off. Adults need to take the complaint seriously and assess what could be wrong, and take the necessary steps to ensure full recovery before your child returns to the game.
Should My Child See a Doctor?
If your child is experiencing pain, swelling, or has any troubling physical ailment, he or she should be checked out by a professional. Having your child see a doctor as soon as possible can prevent bad situations from getting worse or developing lifelong complications.
Also, your child shouldn’t suffer injuries that an adult supervisor should have foreseen and prevented. Let us help you get the compensation you deserve from the negligent supervisor or school. Contact a Seattle child injury lawyer at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., to schedule a free consultation at 888-539-9211.