3 Tips to Keep Young Athletes Healthy for a Lifetime

As parents, many of us have seen the enjoyment, pride, and sense of accomplishment our kids can gain from participation in sports.  And almost all youth sports can be played with little risk of serious injury, provided parents take a few simple precautions.

  1. Pre-season sports physical.  Many youth sports programs require a pre-season physical.  Even if your child’s league doesn’t require it, we highly recommend it.  A quick visit with your Mill Creek Family Practice physician can ensure that your child is physically ready for the upcoming season.  Our doctors will look for warning signs of potential injuries and can offer advice on nutrition, hydration, conditioning, and recovery, to keep your young athlete healthy through the season and beyond.
  2. When in doubt, check it out.  Almost any injury beyond a bump, bruise, or scrape is worth a visit to your Mill Creek Family Practice physician.  Take any ongoing pain seriously and let us see your child.  Early care often prevents a worse outcome and potentially life-long consequences.
  3. Concussion awareness.  Concussions occur in sports where you might suspect them—and in sports where you might not.  Any activity in which young athletes might run into each other or fall to a hard surface could potentially result in concussion, with or without a helmet.  Any display of concussion symptoms—headache, nausea, and dizziness among others—should be taken extremely seriously.  For any suspected concussion, immediately stop your child’s participation in his/her sport and make an appointment to see your primary care physician.

It’s not our intent to scare parents; the vast majority of participants in youth sports programs play without injury and with a wide variety of worthwhile benefits.  Taking the above precautions and making Mill Creek Family Practice your athletic partner are great first steps toward a safe and happy season.