Most sports injuries will heal over time and give the athlete a chance to get back into action. There are, however, several factors that will affect the healing process besides the person’s overall health before the injury.
Let’s look at some of the common sports injuries and how long it takes to recover from them.
Ankle Sprain – This may be caused by accidents like rolling the foot or walking or running on an uneven ground. This can take 6 to 12 weeks to heal with rest and ice compress. Surgery will only be required if there is a ligament tear.
Shin Splint – A shin splint should heal within 2 to 6 weeks, but the person must not put more stress on the bones. Intense workouts that caused the injury should be avoided, and surgery will be required if there is a fracture.
Whiplash or Neck Strain – This is common in sports that require tackling another person. To fully recover, rest and rehabilitation are required for 6 weeks.
Calf Strain – If the injury is mild, 2 weeks should be enough but more severe injuries will take 3 months for recovery.
Hamstring Pull – This injury can take 6 to 12 weeks to heal. It may be caused by sudden movements especially in sports that require jumping and running. To hasten the healing process, the person will require rest and therapy, but surgery is a must if there is a tear that won’t heal.
Simple Fractures – Simple bone fractures will need a minimum of 6 weeks to heal, but this depends on the location of the fracture.
Compound Fractures – If there are broken bones in more than one area, a surgery may be scheduled by the doctor. To fully recover, the person must rest and undergo therapy for a minimum of 8 months.
Fractured Fingers/Toes – With rest, this injury will take between 3 to 5 weeks to completely heal.
Fractured Neck – With a neck brace and plenty of rest, this injury will take a minimum of 6 weeks to fully heal. This applies to injury on any of the seven neck vertebrae.
Fractured Ribs – This injury will require painkillers and exercises that target breathing. It can take at least 6 weeks for a person to fully recover.
Fractured Collarbone – An injury to the clavicle can take between 5 to 10 weeks to fully heal, which will require therapy that ensure there is arm movement.
Mild Contusion – The injury is caused by broken blood vessels. Bruises should disappear within a week.
Concussion – This is a brain injury and will take several weeks to heal depending on the evaluation of the doctors. A person should be cleared by a certified physician before getting back into action.
ACL Tears – Sudden stops or changes in the direction or running can cause a tear. Even with surgery and rehabilitation, this can take more than 6 months to fully heal.
Shoulder Separations – With rest and rehabilitation, it will take a minimum of 2 weeks to recover.
Tennis Elbow – Repetitive motions on the arms can cause this injury. With rest and stretches, this can take about 3 to 12 months to heal completely.