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When Should You Take Your Child to a Sports Orthopaedic Specialist for a Sports Injury?

Youth athletics have seen a surge in popularity in recent times, with kids participating in various sports activities from football to cricket, kabbadi, hockey to basketball. Playing sports can bring about a plethora of advantages for kids, such as improved physical fitness, enhanced socialisation, and the building of character. However, the risk of sports injuries is also a reality. 


As a parent, it's of utmost importance to remain vigilant and aware of any potential sports-related injuries your child could experience. When such an occasion arises, seek medical attention from a qualified paediatric orthopaedic specialist. In this blog, we will dig into the realm of paediatric orthopaedics, sports injuries in kids, and when it's suitable to take your youngster to a sports ortho expert for a sports injury.


Understanding Pediatric Orthopedics


Paediatric orthopaedics is a specialised division of medicine dedicated to the analysis and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries in minors. The musculoskeletal structure of minors differs with that of adults as they experience an evolution of their physical form as their bodies, bones, ligaments, and muscles grow. Paediatric orthopaedic professionals possess specialised skills and aptitude in tackling musculoskeletal issues in kids, such as sports injuries. They can identify the irregularities in kids' bodies, physiology, and development, all of which necessitate tailored attention in order to maximise results.


Paediatric orthopaedic specialists have been taught to detect and tackle various issues, ranging from fractures, sprains, strains, overuse injuries, and congenital deformities to growth plate injuries and more. They use a range of diagnostic modality to identify sports injuries in youngsters. They also prepare elaborate treatment strategies that may include temporary rest, immobilisation, and physical therapy.


Common Sports Injuries in Children


Let's take a more careful look at particular injuries related to sports, like tennis elbow, which is a regular overuse injury in kids.


Tennis elbow is a condition that affects the outer part of the elbow. It is usually caused by repeated strain on the forearm muscles and tendons, causing inflammation and hurting. Kids who do sports with lots of arms moving around, like tennis, baseball, golf, and gymnastics, can get tennis elbow.


Kids with tennis elbow might feel pain and soreness on the outside of the elbow, not have much strength in their forearms, and have problems gripping things. The pain might worsen with activities that need gripping or lifting objects and can be made worse by making the same arm motions repeatedly. If not treated, tennis elbow can get in the way of a child's playing sports and everyday activities.


Risk factors for getting tennis elbow in kids include wrong technique or form, not warming up or stretching before sports activities, using inappropriate equipment, and playing sports for too long without proper rest and recovery. Parents, coaches, and athletes must be aware of the risk factors and take appropriate preventative measures to reduce the risk of developing tennis elbow and other overuse injuries.


When to Seek Care from a Pediatric Ortho Sports Specialist?


As a parent, it's important to know when to get medical help from a doctor for children's orthopaedic issues if your child has a sports injury. Some minor injuries can heal with rest, ice, and pain medicines from the store, but other injuries might need special care from an orthopaedic doctor. These are some rules for when to get care from a kid's bone doctor for a sports hurt: 


  1. Severe pain or swelling: If your kid has great pain or swelling after a sports injury, it could mean a more serious injury, such as breaking a bone or a tear in a ligament. It's necessary to go to a paediatric orthopaedic specialist right away when this happens to get a proper check-up and treatment.
  2. Visible deformity or inability to move the affected limb: If your child's injury causes a deformity that can be seen, or they can't move the limb which is hurt, this might mean there's a more serious injury that needs special treatment. A paediatric orthopaedic specialist can do a full examination or imaging studies to work out how bad the injury is and make a good plan to treat it.
  3. Persistent pain or discomfort: If your child's pain or discomfort is still present even after they rest, put on ice, and take pain medicines, maybe there is something else wrong. Paediatric orthopaedic specialists can do a thorough check to figure out why the pain keeps coming and give treatment choices.
  4. Limited range of motion or difficulty with activities of daily living: Suppose your kid has limited movement in a joint or struggles with everyday activities like walking, running, or doing sports. In that case, it might be that there's a more serious injury that needs treatment from a paediatric orthopaedic doctor.
  5. History of recurrent injuries: If your kid has had recurrent injuries or had orthopaedic treatment before, it's important to get care from a paediatric orthopaedic specialist for any new sports injuries. Kids who have been hurt before may have a bigger chance of getting hurt again and need extra check-ups and care to stop more problems.
  6. Suspected growth plate injury: Growth plates are areas of growing bone in kids which are susceptible to hurt. If your kid gets hurt near a growth plate, like the knee or wrist, it might need special care from a paediatric orthopaedic expert to stop possible growth problems.
  7. Inability to return to sports or physical activities: If your kid can't get back to sports or physical activities after an injury related to sports, it might show an unsolved problem that needs to be looked at and taken care of. A paediatric orthopaedic professional can evaluate the basic reason of the lasting symptoms and make the right treatment plan to assist your kid come back to their sports activities safely.




Sports injuries are regular in kids, and it's significant for parents to be aware of when to search for care from a paediatric orthopaedic expert. Paediatric orthopaedic sports experts have a special understanding and skill in taking care of musculoskeletal problems in kids, including sports injuries. If your kid has severe pain, swelling, twisted shape, continuous pain or uneasiness, lack of movement, trouble with everyday activities, many times injured, possible growth plate injury, or unable to do sports or physical activities, it's better to speak to a paediatric orthopaedic expert for a correct assessment and treatment. Early detection and the right treatment can help stop more problems and make sure a safe and quick comeback to sports and physical activities for your kid.

Medanta Medical Team
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