Recently I read an article in the NY Times about injuries among professional football players. Because of the fiercely competitive nature of the game, long-lasting injuries affecting the brain, spine and peripheral joints are common. Not only is arthritis a common occurrence, but also conditions like Parkinson’s disease, dementia and multiple sclerosis occur at higher rates.
A game with such serious consequences might be considered unacceptable to most of us, but professional athletes know that there is a price to be paid for the extreme levels of success they achieve – it is often paid with their health.
As a father, I know that the example the pros set serves to inspire young children to reach for their own dreams of fame and success. Parents, of course, just want to help their children work towards reaching their goals. They sign them up for organized sports at very early ages. These days it’s common to see young children out on a field practicing not only football but also baseball, soccer, basketball or even lacrosse as often as 5 times a week.
We are training our children harder than ever. And like the pros, they are getting hurt more severely and frequently than in the past. It is not uncommon for young athletes in high school to have undergone multiple surgeries or be suffering with severe arthritis.
As a chiropractor I want to encourage parents to pay very close attention to the health of their young, future stars. The bangs and bruises that they “walk off” may be just the thing that starts them towards a more permanent and potentially career ending injury.
One way to prevent subtle, less obvious problems from turning into chronic, irreparable injuries is through regular chiropractic check-ups and adjustments.
If you would like any more information about protecting your children from getting hurt or having them evaluated, please contact the office.