January 7, 2013

What is an overuse injury?

Sports Injury

THIS POST IS PART OF THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO SPORTS MEDICINE

Unlike acute injuries, which result from a onetime injury, overuse injuries occur over a period of time. They are the result of subtle, smaller injuries (micro-trauma) to the tendons, muscles, bones or joints.

Cause

  • Stress on the tendons, muscles, bones or joints
  • Muscles stretched beyond its ability

Risk factors

  • Beginning a new workout activity or sport and attempting to do too much too soon
  • Not allowing the body enough time to recover between a certain exercise or activity 

Common overuse injuries

Physician examination

To determine whether you have an overuse injury, your physician will ask you for a complete medical history, ask questions about your pain and how long you have been experiencing your symptoms, and conduct a physical examination. An X-ray or MRI may be necessary to rule out other injuries.

Make an appointment with an OrthoIndy sports medicine specialist

Treatment

Treatment for an overuse injury is non-surgical and includes:

  • Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation (RICE)
  • Activity modification or immobilization: Such as avoiding activities that worsen symptoms
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen
  • Home exercises to strengthen muscles
  • Physical therapy to increase strength and flexibility

Prevention and recovery

  • Avoid the activity that caused your injury for up to two weeks
  • Condition muscles with exercise
  • Warm up before exercise or sports activity
  • Wear appropriate protective gear
  • Cool down after exercise or sports activity
  • If you feel pain, stop immediate and let muscles heal completely before returning to sports or activity

Learn more about treatment for sports injuries at OrthoIndy.

Schedule an Appointment Call OrthoIndy 317.802.2000
Megan Golden

By Megan Golden

Megan is the current marketing specialist for OrthoIndy. Megan graduated from Ball State University in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and advertising and a communications studies minor and has been with OrthoIndy since then.

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