Injuries may occur from sports, exercise, repetitive stresses on the body at work, improper lifting and improper use of fitness equipment. To properly enable the body to heal an injury appropriately, the doctor and patient must work together through specific phases of injury management.
- Acute Phase (7-10 days). This phase occurs following an injury where the primary problem is inflammation. If the inflammation can be managed early, the injury site will heal faster. Ice is indicated and should be applied as instructed by your chiropractor. No repetitive stress should be applied to the area and activity restrictions may be given.
- Sub-Acute Phase (2-6 weeks). In this phase, the inflammation has ceased and the body will begin to heal from the inside out. Remodeling begins and scar tissue forms around the injured area to bind which may cause decreased range of motion, restriction in muscle movement, and myofascial pain. Your chiropractor will begin myofascial tissue techniques and light exercise to help re-strengthen the injured area. Alternating heat and cold may be indicated.
- Rehabilitation: (6 weeks – 6 months). In this phase, remodeling is completing. Soft tissue techniques and various types of massage techniques are used to mobilize and/or RESTORE soft tissues, ligaments, and tendons. Theraband stretching may be indicated with exercise progression.
- Maintenance: Once the sports injury is healed, most patients have a 40% chance of re-injury. It is necessary to provide the patient with maintenance treatment to strengthen the area and the core (Spine) since all the soft tissues attach to the spine. Pre-event physicals/examination is utilized to screen athletes that help them perform at peak performance in pre and post events. Regular chiropractic adjustments, exercise, nutritional balance, and a good supplementation program can change a person’s life.