Soft tissue injuries are a normal part of most sporting activities. Whether its a sprain, strain, muscle pull or tear, the immediate first aid of Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation is still currently the best way of limiting pain, swelling and hopefully encourages a faster recovery time.
Rest – Rest is vital to protect the injured soft tissue from further injury and aggravation. It is a key component in any repair of the body. Try avoid any aggravating factors on onset of injury especially movement and weight bearing to protect from ongoing strain of the area.
Ice – Ice is excellent at reducing the inflammatory process seen when an injury occurs. The cold provides short term pain relief and reduces blood flow to the area, which are all part of any inflammatory response. A good staring point is to apply ice for 20 min every hour until symptoms start to reduce.
Compression – Compression’s main aim is to help reduce and limit swelling, which hinders the time frame of recovery. Although some swelling is inevitable, too much can result in loss of function and an increase in pain. The easiest way for compression to be applied is the use of an elastic bandage.
Elevation – Elevation helps to reduce swelling by increasing venous return to the heart, so it is best used when the affected area/limb is elevated above heart level.
And don’t forget the final element of the mnemonic, Referral!! Make sure you get your injury checked out to rule out anything more sinister. If your worried about an injury or need to check up on something, book in with one of our Osteo’s today!.