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The 3 Most Common Overuse Injuries in Teens

Spring has finally sprung here in Austin, and as temperatures go up, so do the number of injuries from springtime sports. While more serious fractures and sprains can and do happen, we see a significant number of overuse injuries that do not require surgery to treat. Here are the three most common types of overuse injuries we see every year.

Stress Fractures

This is the most common kind of injury in runners, but we often see it in tennis players, gymnasts, and track and field athletes. Those, of course, are sports where

an athlete’s feet strike the ground repeatedly, and the constant impact can be damaging to the body. With every stride, the power of a foot hitting the ground creates energy that needs to be absorbed by either the muscle or the bone. As the muscles become fatigued, more and more of that stress gets transferred to the bones, until the compounded stress causes the bones to crack. Thankfully, treatment is effective; the bones themselves can heal those fractures with rest. Our PT team will also help evaluate an athlete’s stride and strength of the adjoining muscles.  Stress fractures don’t have to kill your season either! Our PT team can help you stay in shape safely while resting your injured body part.


Jumper’s Knee

Though technically called patellar tendonitis, Jumper’s Knee is a condition that affects athletes who play sports where jumping plays a big part — such as basketball and volleyball. However, it’s not the jumping that can cause problems — rather, it’s the landing. Much like stress fractures, which most of the time affect the lower leg bones, this condition affects the cordlike kneecap tendon that attaches to the bone. Once again, the stress of repeatedly striking the ground after a jump sends shock up the body which can cause strain and pain on the knee. Like all overuse injuries, Jumper’s Knee should not be ignored.


Rotator Cuff Injuries

When we think of Spring here in Texas a lot of us think baseball and softball. Unfortunately, when many parents think of the sport, they also think of rotator cuff injuries and throwing injuries. The repeated action of throwing a baseball or softball can cause significant stress in the ligaments and tendons of young athletes whose bodies are still growing. This can cause pain, numbness or tingling in those areas of the body, and continued playing can only worsen those symptoms. Much like the previous two conditions, rest is important so the body can heal the damaged areas, whether they’re bone, tendon, ligament or cartilage.


Our experienced staff at CTPO is always ready to help diagnose any of these common injuries, and to work on a care plan that is right for each of patients so they can get back out there on the track, court, or field as soon as possible! If you have any questions or are looking for pediatric orthopedists in Central Texas, give us a call at 512-478-8116.


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Pediatric Orthopedic Physicians + Pediatric Physical Therapists serving Austin, Cedar Park, Westlake, South Austin, Four Points and Central Texas.