On February 5th, Super Bowl LI was played between the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons in Houston’s own NRG Stadium. Although it is always better to cheer on the hometown Texans, the game marked the conclusion of the NFL season. However, people will continue to play football in backyards and local fields throughout the year, so it is important to discuss the possible foot and ankle injuries players can suffer on the gridiron. Head injuries have consumed the spotlight recently, but a vast number of injuries that cause athletes to miss games occur from the knee down. Some examples are:
1. Ankle sprains and fractures: When your ankle twists beyond its normal range of motion and the ligaments holding it together stretch or tear, a sprain occurs. When one or more of the bones in the joint capsule breaks, it is considered a fracture. A sprain can be treated with rest, ice, compression, and elevation, but a fracture might require surgery.
2. Achilles tendonitis or rupture: The Achilles tendon is the strongest, toughest tendon in the human body and it connects the bottom of the calf muscle to the heel. If an athlete makes a sudden jump or movement or suffers a direct blow to the back of the leg, the Achilles tendon may become inflamed or even torn.
3. Turf toe: Turf toe does not necessarily have to be sustained on a turf field. It occurs when the big toe is hyper-extended and then sprained from bending abnormally. If the toe is dislocated, surgery may be necessary.
These injuries are best treated in their early stages, and can become worse if the athlete attempts to “play through the pain.” A sports injury may be easily treatable, but lead to months of rehabilitation with one wrong step. The doctors at the Foot and Ankle Centers of North Houston are trained to determine the best surgical or non-surgical solution to your football injury and other foot or ankle ailments, like bunions, corns and calluses, or diabetic wounds. Contact us through our website or call us at (281) 444-4114 to ask any questions or to request an appointment!