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Potential for Youth Sports Injuries on the Rise

Participating in athletics can be a great way for children to get exercise and learn about teamwork and discipline. However, sports can also come with injuries, both the obvious, like broken bones, and the less obvious, like tendonitis.

In hopes of achieving their dreams, children may push themselves or feel pressured to play sports at competitive levels at a young age, typically choosing multiple sports to participate in. As one sports’ season ends, another one begins, and for some children, their season never ends as camps, leagues, and competitions continue year-round. This does not allow time for a child's growing body to rest and recuperate, resulting in more chronic overuse injuries among children.

“Twenty years ago, children were not playing sports at such intense levels,” explains Dr. Andrew M. Blecher, sports medicine doctor at the Southern California Orthopedic Institute. “Kids are also specializing earlier. Sports specialization means kids are playing the same sport year round in multiple leagues and camps. Even professional athletes get some rest in the off-season, but kids never have an off-season. This leads to overuse injuries, like growth plate injuries and tendonitis."

Rest is always best between sports, but if your child suffers an injury, it's important to treat it appropriately from the beginning to help them return to play safely. If an injury is keeping your son or daughter off the playing field or court, please call (877) 952-8484 today to schedule an appointment with one of the sports medicine doctors at the Southern California Orthopedic Institute.

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