It doesn’t matter whether you are a professional footballer, a holiday-time skiing fan or someone who enjoys a spot of running at the weekend, injuries can hit us all. And recovery from sports injuries can be frustrating and seem slow but making sure we do it properly will vesting increase the chance of returning to full fitness and enjoying our sport once more. So here are some tips around injury recovery to help you manage your expectations after something happens.
Recovery time is a complicated topic because everyone heals differently and the same injury can affect people differently. But if you have a general idea of how long injuries take the heal, then you can have a rough timeline in your mind as to when you can be back to your sport or activity.
Broken bones take the longest to heal, which isn’t a surprise. Simple fractures take around six weeks while a fracture to a finger or toe can need around three to five weeks to heal. A collarbone fracture is an example of a real nasty one that can take up to 10 weeks to heal.
Sprains and strains are common and usually heal themselves without too much effort but do need a little time. A sprained ankle can heal in as little as five days but more severe strains can take three to six weeks. Calf strains, tears or pulls are graded from 1 to three, with one taking around a fortnight to heal while a grade 3 might see you laid up for three months or more.
Returning to your sport
You should always check with a medical professional about your injury and about how long it might be before you can return to your sport. They may recommend treatment as simple as rest and a cold compress while there are a number of innovative new treatments, such as Stem Cell Therapy, being offered for more serious conditions that may be suitable, and a preferable alternative to surgery.
The key to a successful return from injury is preparation before the injury and what you do while you are injured. Doing the right conditioning before you undertake any sport activity dramatically reduces the chance that you become injured and can help you recover better if you do. You may need to use other types of activity to build up to your sport, depending on what it is – examples include swimming, rowing, water running or even weight training of non-injured areas to build up strength.
Be prepared for injury
No-one intends to get injured but you should always be prepared for it. Getting your body in condition is one measure we have mentioned but there are others. You should mentally prepare yourself for what will happen if you pick up an injury, what the likely recovery time is and what you will need to do.
If your activity is something like skiing, you may even want to consider taking insurance to help out if you are injured. The injury may mean you miss time off work or need special treatment and insurance can help with the cost of this.