5 of The Most Common Winter Sports Injuries
As the winter season begins, so does many fun outdoor activities such as skiing, sledding, snowboarding, ice skating & more. While this is one of joys of the winter months, it is also important to note some of the most common winter sports injuries that may occur.
- Knee Injuries: Skiing, ice skating or just maneuvering in icy, slick conditions often causes knee injuries such as sprains, ACL/PCL tears or Meniscus injuries (the cartridge in your knee). Twisting your knee is a common motion in winter sports, especially in skiing & ice skating. An over extension while performing these activities can result in tears or sprains. Many sprains & ACL tears require orthopedic braces & some meniscus injuries may require additional medical attention like surgery.
- Skiers Thumb: Skiers thumb is one of the most common injuries for skiers. It occurs when the thumb gets wrapped up in the pole strap or from using your hands to brace a fall. This causes a tear in the ligament called the connective ulnar collateral ligament. In minor cases, this type of injury can be treated with at home remedies, however, in some instances, treatment may result in a cast or bandage or require surgery.
- Wrist & Hand Injuries: In any slick condition or winter sport, falls happen. When they do, many people make the mistake of trying to prevent the fall, which often causes sprains to the hands or wrists. Many sprains in the hands or wrists can be treated with wraps or braces. Finger injuries are often treated with splints. Surgery may be required with these injuries. To help avoid these sprains, try to fall on your side or bottom, if possible.
- Frostbite: This condition is extremely common for winter athletes & occurs when your body tries to keep its core at a regulated temperature in extremely cold conditions. When this happens, the blood rushes to the core of the body leaving smaller areas of the body exposed to freezing. Severe cases of frostbite can lead to amputation. Staying dry & wearing proper winter attire is important to protect against frostbite.
- Head Injuries: These types of injuries are unfortunately common for any sports dealing with snow or ice. Significant falls can lead to head injuries like concussions. Be mindful of symptoms of a concussion such as confusion, swelling at the site of the injury, impaired vision, dizziness & vomiting. If you experience any of these symptoms, please seek emergency medical attention.
Be aware of the injuries that can occur with winter sports & activities & stay safe!