It happens to all of us at some point or another. Heck as you get older it typically happens more often; pain. There are all sorts of types of pain. Most of the time, we try to endure or work through pain and injuries. How many times have you seen or heard about a famous athlete who ‘dealt’ with the pain and still managed to accomplish incredible goals?
Many of these people are the type we want to idolize so of course we then try to emulate them; which of course is incredibly stupid.
Pain is on Purpose
What is pain? It is the nerves in your body sending a message to the brain saying, “Ouch, stop it idiot!” Keep in mind our heroes feel that pain too. They also have doctors and trainers standing by for massages, injections, and professional opinions about the long term effects of performance. Most of us have a fear of the doctor and hope that we can just ‘walk it off’.
But we shouldn’t be that casual about injuries. They are serious business and should be treated as such. We only get one body and most of us are not blessed with huge contracts and free evaluations from team doctors, so we need to pay more attention to pain.
Things Not to Ignore
Sharp Pains – Sharp pains are always bad. Soreness in a muscle is usually a dull ache and it can fade. A sharp pain means the nerves are firing off for a specific reason. It can be a strain, a spasm, or even a tear. That means when you feel one it is time to stop your activities and put some ice on the problem. If it lasts longer than 24 hours then more than likely you need to see a doctor.
Swelling – Another sign from the body that something is wrong. Even if you don’t have lots of pain the excess blood flow into the area always indicated a problem. Sprains and bruises are common issues but also a partial tear of something can be a culprit. If using regular treatments of ice over a day or two does not help reduce the swelling then you have a problem.
Head Injuries – The NFL has finally gotten on the ball; brain injuries are dangerous. If you smack your head in a sport or anywhere else you need to make sure you do not strain your body again until it is 100%. Head trauma usually creates swelling in the brain. Increasing the flow of blood in the body (and thus the brain) is not a good idea if you still have issues with a swollen brain.
Lightheadedness – This can because of low blood sugar, improper oxygen flow, or lack of blood flow. In all cases the lightheadedness means you are about to pass out. Sit down immediately and sip water while eating something with sugar in it. If that doesn’t help then medical attention should be sought.
The Bottom Line
A lot of people are all about being tough and working through the pain; but what is the point? You aren’t impressing anyone at the gym or on the field. In this case it is always better to be safe rather than sorry. You only get one body so make sure you treat it right!