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JACKSONVILLE, FL, July 10, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- For people experiencing persistent pain while exercising or as a result of a sports injury, the most common reaction is generally to rest until the pain and any other related symptoms go away. However, while rest after an injury is recommended by the sports medicine experts at Heekin Orthopedics, prolonged periods of rest may in fact have the opposite effect.
When to Rest
During the first one or two days after an injury, depending on its severity, the so-called RICE (Rest-Ice-Compression-Elevation) protocol should be implemented. In this case, "rest" refers to minimizing any movement of the injured area in order to reduce the risk of contracting any further injuries. Ice should be applied as soon as possible after the injury for approximately 20 minutes and every two hours after that to reduce the risk of swelling. Compression with an elastic bandage and elevation of the affected body part above heart level will also help reduce swelling.
However, it should be noted that even during this acute period after an injury, the term "rest" does not necessarily mean that you must be bedridden. Any exercises not involving the affected area are fine and are encouraged by most sports medicine specialists.
When Not to Rest
Many people will rest for several days or even weeks or months after an injury until they feel less pain and then get straight back into their regular exercise routine only to experience the same or worse pain all over again.
It is important to note that pain itself is not a disorder but rather a symptom indicating that there is an underlying issue present. In many cases, it may be a simple sprain, and resting may indeed be everything that is needed.
However, in other cases, the cause of the pain may be more complex, and although resting may result in temporary reductions of swelling and inflammation in these cases, the underlying problem still remains. In other words, not being in pain does not mean that you are not injured anymore.
By resting for several weeks, you will also start de-conditioning your muscles, and this may make you even more injury-prone in the future and will make your recovery all that much harder.
"Pushing through the pain may be equally as detrimental as resting for too long," explains Dr. Bates. "If the pain does not subside after a few days of resting, you should see a sports injury doctor to determine the cause of the pain and to discuss the best strategy for you to get back to your exercise routine as quickly as possible."
To learn more about the sports medicine and rehabilitation services offered by Heekin Orthopedics, please visit https://heekinortho.com.
About Heekin Orthopedics:
Established in 2001 by Dr. R. David Heekin in historic Riverside, Heekin Orthopedic Specialists has grown to include 10 knowledgeable
orthopedic surgeons, a pain management specialist and a physiatrist. They have five state-of the-art Jacksonville locations, three of which have on-site Physical Therapy departments.
To learn more, please visit https://heekinortho.com.
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