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Thursday, April 21, 2022

Why You Should Get That Injury Seen To Sooner Rather Than Later

Kiwis have a "she'll be right" attitude about many things. And our bodies are no different. I often see clients coming in only after they have been ignoring their injury for a couple of weeks, just playing the "wait and see" game. Spoiler alert! It didn't go away on its own. 

You'll Develop Bad Movement Patterns 

Our bodies are amazing and adaptable. Many people can continue on their daily lives despite their injuries. But what this often means is that we find strange work arounds for our daily tasks. This usually shows up in the same joint on the opposite side, or the joints above and below the original injury. For example, limping around on a sprained ankle will put extra strain on the uninjured side, and result in pain stiffness and sometimes extra wear on other parts of the body. 

Rehabilitation Takes Longer

Because of the poor movement patterns, it takes longer to treat the original injury, and you have to spend time unlearning these movement patterns in order to prevent latent problems from developing years down the line. The most common of these that we see in clinic is arthritis. This is usually not seen for many years, sometimes decades after the injury, but when it does appear, most people can remember a significant injury to that joint years before. 

It Will End Up Costing You More

Because rehab takes longer, requiring more physio treatments and more money spent on those treatments. Since money doesn't grow on trees, this usually means less to spend on other, more fun things.

You'll Miss Out On The Things You Love

More time spent nursing an injury means you will be out of sport/activity for longer. More time sitting on the sideline, watching others progress and hone their skills leaving you behind. This can have far reaching consequences such as missing out on selection for tryouts or an audition. 

You Could Develop A Chronic Pain Disorder

The brain is amazingly complex, but easily confused. Over time, the chemistry of the brain can change resulting in pain production long after the injury has physically healed. This pain can be debilitating, and while the injury may no longer be the problem, the pain is very much real. Treatment for Chronic Pain is a long slow process and is not always successful. Prevention is the best medicine in this case. 

You Could Miss Something Really Serious

Some injuries need urgent specialist review. As a physio, it is my job to identify when this is the case, and refer you to the appropriate person. A missed diagnosis and referral can result in avoidable surgeries, untreatable conditions and the chronic pain mentioned above. All things that are best avoided.

In summary, my advice is if you cant walk or lean on it after the injury, get it checked out. If it hurts the next day. get it checked out. And if your worried about it, just get it checked to be safe. In New Zealand we are so lucky to have ACC. You do not have to get a referral for physiotherapy, and we can lodge an ACC claim in clinic which will significantly reduce the cost of your appointment. 

To book an appointment online, visit our main page, or give us a call on 028 457 9543


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