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Preventing Sprains In Youth Sports

Along with strains sprains are among the most common injuries in sports. All sports and exercises, even walking, carry a risk of such injuries. Sprains can take as little as a few days to heal or as long as a few weeks. To reduce the risk of sprains, experts, including the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, make a number of easy-to-follow recommendations.

Ankle Sprains: Parent's Role in Treatment, Recovery and Return to Play

Ankle sprains are common in youth sports. Here's advice for parents on what should be done when your child suffers an ankle sprain, how to know when your child is ready to return to sports, and what he should do when he returns.

Ankle Sprains: Recognition and Treatment

As with burns, there are three "degrees" of sprains: mild (first-degree), moderate (second degree) and severe (third-degree). While the intensity varies, pain, bruising, and swelling are common to all three categories.  Most can be treated in a doctor's office.

Safety-Release Bases Prevent Baseball Sliding Injuries

Little League Baseball® and Little League Softball® require the use of safety-release or break-away bases, because a traditional stationary base, bolted to a metal post and sunk into the
ground, is a rigid obstacle for an athlete to encounter while sliding
and poses a clear safety hazard.

Modify or Cancel Games or Practices In High Heat or Humidity

Extremely hot or humid weather may require that sports practices or games be modified or even cancelled because of the risk of heat illness. In deciding whether to do so, you should keep in mind that hot, dry weather can be extremely dangerous. Because sweat evaporates very quickly in such conditions, your child won't feel sweaty, and neither you nor your child may recognize how much water he or she has lost. As the relative humidity increases, the effectiveness of sweating in cooling the body also decreases. When the relative humidity is high, sweat drips off the skin so that the cooling benefit of evaporation is lost even at cooler temperatures, resulting in a build-up of body heat.

Ten Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke in Student-Athletes

Among the steps for preventing heat stroke among student-athletes are acclimatizing athletes to the heat, limiting or cancelling practices in hot, humid weather, and recognizing the warning signs of heat illness.

NOAA Heat Index Measures Risk of Heat Illness

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has developed a heat index chart parents and coaches can use to determine when heat and humidity have reached the point where athletes are at serious risk of heat illnesses, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion or even heat stroke.

Death of Ex-NFL Star Highlights Need for Vigilence on Concussions

The finding by a neuropathologist that brain damage from repeated concussions suffered by former NFL star Andre Waters likely led to his depression and ultimate death by suicide in November 2006 highlights once again the critical need for parents and youth athletes to become educated and proactive about concussions.

Head Injury Doubles Risk Of Second Within 6 Months, Study Says

An April 2007 Canadian study found that children receiving emergency room treatment for a head injury (HI) are nearly twice as likely to experience another HI requiring medical attention in the next six months compared to children who initially visited the ER for a non-head related injury. The Canadian study is consistent with earlier study finding that once an athlete suffers a concussion, the risk of suffering a second concussion is three to four times greater.

Mouth Guards Prevent Dental Injuries But Require Frequent Replacement

Mouthguards help prevent injury to the mouth, teeth, lips, cheeks and tongue, but they may also increase the number and intensity of mouth cuts and abrasions, thus exposing an athlete to an increased chance of infection due to the bacteria, yeast, and fungi that they routinely collect.  Experts recommend that mouthguards be sanitized daily and replaced after 14 days or when they develop sharp or jagged edges, whichever occurs first.

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