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There are more than 30 million children who play different kinds of organized sports in the US, while others play in recreational activities.
According to a 2002 report by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nearly 1.9 million of those children are injured, and childhood injuries are a growing problem. (CDC ChildhoodInjury Report:
Patterns of Unintentional Injuries among 0-19 Year Olds in the United States, 2000-2006)
Facts about childhood injuries from the CDC :
- Every year, approximately 875,000 children are killed and nonfatal injuries affect the lives of between 10 million and 30 million more globally, according to the CDC.
- Childhood injuries are also a problem in high income countries such as the United States, where approximately 12,000 children die annually from unintentional injury-related causes.
- The most common injury is musculoskeletal.
- These type of injuries include injuries to children’s muscles, tendons, or bones.
What types of sports related injuries are there?
According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases,
NIAMS/National Institutes of Health, there are many types of injuries that can seriously harm children during sports because children are still growing and injuries that might not be as serious for adults can injure children’s growth.
Some of types of injuries include (NIAM/NIH):
- Sprains—injuries to ligaments, the bands of tissue connecting bones at the joint. Ankle sprains are the most common injuries that occur during sports.
- Strains—injuries to muscles or tendons.
- Growth plates—the area of developing tissues at the end of long bones in growing children. After children reach adolescence the growth is complete and the growth plate is replaced by solid bones. Long bones include hands and fingers, forearms, upper legs, lower legs, and foot bones. If injuries to the long bones occur in children, parents should consult an orthopedic surgeon, specializing in bone injuries
- Repetitive motion injuries—repeated stress on bones or inflammation of tendons occur when muscles and tendons are overused.
- Heat-related injuries—these include dehydration, that occurs when children don’t have enough body fluids; heat exhaustion—that displays as nausea, dizziness, weakness, headache, pale and moist skin, heavy perspiration, normal or low body temperature, weak pulse, dilated pupils, disorientation, and fainting spells; and heat stroke—headache, dizziness, confusion, hot dry skin, possibly leading to vascular collapse, coma, and death.
Keeping kids hydrated
- Schedule regular fluid breaks
- Be aware of the signs of heat-related injuries during practice and games–dilated pupils; dizziness; fainting; headache; heavy perspiration; nausea; pale and moist or hot, dry
- skin; weak pulse; and weakness.
- Have children wear cotton breathable clothing
- Use misting sprays on the body to keep cool.
*Adapted from Patient Care magazine, copyrighted by Medical Economic