Many schools and organized sports leagues require kids and teenagers to get a sports physical before being allowed to participate. In the event that your child is starting a new sport and a sports physical is not required, it is still in your best interest to get one. While most minors get annual well checks from their primary care physician or pediatrician, health can change over the course of a year, which is one of the reasons that a sports physical a few weeks before a new sports season is essential. Some of the top reasons a sports physical for a child or teen is so important include:
1. Assess Overall Health
Participating in a sport requires a lot of physical activity, exertion, and stamina. While most kids will do just fine playing sports, there can be health concerns. For example, kids with asthma may have more difficulty playing an active sport. During a sports physical, a physician will review your child's health history and do a complete exam to ensure that he or she is in good physical health. If any issues are discovered during a sports physical, your child's doctor can prescribe treatment to help get your child healthy enough to play.
2. Identify Heart Conditions
A child or teen can seem perfectly healthy, but some are born with congenital heart conditions that are not always found during regular well checks growing up. Unfortunately, physical activity and playing sports can cause problems if a child or teen has an underlying heart condition that has not been identified. During a sports physical, a doctor will spend extra time listening to your child's heart to ensure that there are no signs of a heart condition that needs to be treated.
3. Review Past Injuries
Playing sports is a lot of fun, and it is a great way for kids and teens to get the exercise that they need, but unfortunately, injuries can happen, especially in contact sports. If your child has sustained sports injuries in the past, their doctor will address this during a sports physical and check the injured area to ensure that it healed properly. In the event that your child has injured the same area of the body more than once, their doctor may have cause for concern and may suggest not participating in a specific sport. During a sports physical, your child's doctor can also offer advice on preventing injuries while playing sports.
To learn more, contact a company like Port City Pediatrics today.