Therapy: Adolescents / Teen Therapy
THERAPY FOR ADOLESCENTS / TEEN
Injuries and physical issues can become a concern during the adolescent and teenage years because the body is still growing. Adolescents who participate in organized sports can be more prone to accidents and over-use injuries because their bones, muscles and tendons are still developing. If your child has been injured, we will partner with him or her and their physician to design and implement a treatment plan that follows physician’s orders and meets your child’s personal goals. Parental education and training are an essential component of all of our adolescent/teen therapy programs.
WHAT CAUSES PEDIATRIC OVERUSE INJURIES
Sports Specific Factors
Kids involved in high level sports are susceptible to “burnout” if their bodies are not given chance to rest and rejuvenate. Year round training and increased concentration on one sport at an earlier age has contributed to the increase of pediatric overuse injuries. Due to periods of rapid growth pediatric athletes can sometimes lack the coordination required to develop an effective and strong kinetic chain. This means many high level techniques increased stress is placed on regional body parts.
Growth spurts make kids vulnerable because their muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones are growing rapidly, and they are often growing at different rates. This imbalance causes tightness in muscles and tendons around joint insertions, resulting in a loss of flexibility that increases the risk of injury. Poor equipment and inferior playing surfaces at a pediatric level can also be contributing factors.
The Unprepared System
A large component contributing to pediatric overuse injuries is the relatively “unprepared” system. Growth plates are weaker and more susceptible to injury than normal adult bone. Overuse injury and/or inflammation to bone is more frequent in a pediatric population because the ligamentous and tendon structures are relatively strong, whilst bones with active growth plates lack the strength of adult bone.
THE MOST COMMON ADOLESCENT / TEEN OVERUSE CONDITIONS CAN BENEFIT FROM PHYSICAL THERAPY
Asgood Schlatter’s disease is probably the most frequent cause of knee pain in children. The condition occurs most commonly in children between the ages of 9 and 16 years but it can occur in younger children. Osgood-Schlatter disease is always characterized by activity-related pain that occurs a few inches below the knee-cap, or patella, on the front of the knee. The child will have swelling in the area, and tenderness to touch. Sports requiring lots of running, jumping, kneeling, and squatting are particularly associated with this condition.
Sever’s Disease is the most frequent cause of heel pain in children. It is characterized by pain that occurs on the back of the heel, where the Achilles tendon attaches on the heel bone. Activities such as running and jumping can put stress on the tight muscles and tendons which may lead to inflammation and heel pain at the growth plate. This condition occurs most commonly in active children between the ages of 8 and 14 years. Children older than 15 are more rarely affected because their bones have finished growing
Repetitive Ankle Sprains
Sprains of the ankle ligaments are the most common injury in sports medicine. Most involve the lateral ligament complex. In the pediatric population, these sprains often involve the avulsion of small fragments of bone or cartilage. Early physical therapy intervention and proprioceptive re-education to actively remove swelling and mold healing ligament has been demonstrated to result in optimal return-to-sport timeframes.
MEET OUR PHYSICAL THERAPISTS
At our clinic, our sports physical therapists provide comprehensive evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention plan for different sports-related injuries. Our state-of-the-art facility is equipped with all the orthopedic sports therapy services you need. Our staff of experienced therapists is familiar with treating the bones, muscles, ligaments, joints, and tendons so you can get back to performing your specific sport.
To schedule an appointment with an occupational or physical therapist at Optim Orthopedics, contact us at 912.644.5300 (8:00 a.m. -5:00 p.m.).