[Continued from Part 1]

4) Wear a Brace

The balancing concern to staying limber is protecting your injured limb. Your life doesn’t stop just because you got injured and you can’t (thank goodness) just sit at home all day for the weeks, sometimes months, it takes to fully recover. You’ll still have to go to work or school and continue running your usual errands. However, getting in and out of the car and managing your normal life tasks can often put an injury at risk of being bumped around a little too much. If your injury is a foot or leg problem, you may also be at risk of reinjuring yourself by stepping wrong.

The ideal solution for healing safely and living your life is a good brace. In fact, you might even want a sequence of braces. A sturdy brace with plastic sheathing gives you the best protection early in recovery when you want to repel as much of a bump as possible. Later in recovery, a reinforced cloth brace provides some additional support and protection while still giving you flexibility.

And, of course, a compression brace can help you keep to your RICE at any stage of recovery.

5) Work Out Around the Injury

Some athletes don’t realize this, but resting your injury doesn’t actually require you to rest the rest of your body. In fact, it’s actually better if you keep your blood flowing. You should scale back your workout routine and be careful with your injured limb, this will provide the extra energy needed to heal. Especially if you improve your nutrition at the same time.

However, you can also work out around the injury. Get creative, but be careful about your form so as not to re-injure yourself or injure a new limb. The good news is that injuries are almost always isolatable. You can work out with one leg propped up, one arm in a sling, or laying on your back working crunches and weights. Resistance bands are also great for working out in an even way while still isolating an injured joint.

6) Massage Gently While Healing

The next thing you can do for yourself is a little more direct. During the early stages of healing, you don’t want to poke at the wound too much. However, once the wound is fully closed and/or starts to change colors, gentle massage can be very useful. Do not do anything that hurts, but gently rubbing your fingertips in circles around a healing area can be very helpful to the healing process.

This can break up lactic acid and any dead cells that might otherwise become scar tissue. You may also consider rubbing in an appropriate ointment into the area. Neosporin is a good all-purpose ointment but you can also look up products specific to your injury. Activate the healing tissue without causing pain and apply ice or heat packs as needed.

7) See a Physical Therapist

Finally, consider working with a professional physical therapist. Injury recovery is a specialty of physical therapy and there are special exercises you can do that will promote healing. A physical therapist will provide you with guidance, equipment, and support to specifically recover your healing injury. They will help you to stretch and strengthen the joint or muscle so that you can recover both more quickly and with greater ability.

A physical therapist can also help you to work out around an injury and advise you on how to modify recovery treatment as you get better. If you can’t afford a personal physical therapist, you may also be able to find group sessions in your city.

Healing from an injury can be a challenging experience, but you can accelerate recovery in a number of ways. Take good care of your injury and try a few methods that can fit easily into your life. For more information on how wounds heal or how to recover from an injury in the best possible way, contact us today at 570-208-2787 and ask about one of our Free Discovery Visits!