April 1, 2014

Maury Regional Medical Center offers youth sports safety tips

COLUMBIA, Tenn. — The arrival of warmer weather signals the start of many outdoor activities, including youth league sports. April is National Youth Sports Safety Month and Maury Regional Medical Center (MRMC) offers some guidelines on helping youngsters stay safe and healthy while participating in their favorite pastimes. 

The National Youth Sports Safety Foundation estimates that five million children require treatment in emergency rooms each year because of sports injuries — the second most frequent cause of injury for both boys and girls. Many of these can be prevented according to Jason Martin, a physical therapist with MRMC’s Physical Medicine Department.

“Playing sports is a great way for young people to learn the importance of teamwork while getting the benefits of physical fitness,” said Martin. “Parents and coaches can help reduce the risk that a child will be injured while playing sports by taking a few important precautions.”

To help make sure that children stay healthy while playing sports, parents are encouraged to consider these suggestions:  

  • Schedule a pre-season physical examination with the child’s physician.
  • Make certain that necessary protective equipment is being used and that it fits the child well.
  • Be sure the child warms up with stretching prior to practice and game time.
  • Never allow a child to play sports while injured or fatigued.
  • Ensure that the player maintains a well-balanced diet and remains hydrated.
  • Keep the focus on having fun instead of placing pressure on a child to excel or win.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of a concussion. Seek immediate medical treatment for a child who appears dazed or confused, has trouble with vision or balance, experiences nausea or headaches, or loses consciousness.