Your children are healthy, active and have been playing sports for years. So why should they need to get a sports physical before heading back to the class this year? Sports physicals are important screenings that can detect potential problems before student athletes start another season. They can also help children and teens prepare to help avoid getting sick or hurt while playing their sport. With an estimated 38 million children and teens playing at least one sport, annual sports physicals help ensure they are healthy and adequately in shape to participate.
What is a Sports Physical?
A sports physical consists of a medical history and a physical exam. Information gathered in the medical history section includes family members with serious illnesses, health problems such as asthma your child may have had when they were younger, any hospitalizations or surgery, allergies, past injuries, problems feeling dizzy or passing out previously, and current medications they are taking. It is important that both parents, if possible, help complete the family medical history portion.
The physical examination includes recording height and weight, blood pressure and pulse readings, a vision check, listening to their heartbeat and breathing, examining their abdomen, as well as ears, nose and throat. The health care provider will also check posture, joints, flexibility and assess strength. Your child will also be asked about use of drugs, alcohol, dietary supplements and performance enhancers.
Upon the completion of the physical exam, the health care provider may sign the release for your child to participate in sports, or may request a follow-up examination or additional testing.
Prevention is the Best Medicine
Sports physicals can help identify potential problems or risks your child faces when participating in sports. With a thorough examination and understanding of his or her personal and family medical history, the health care provider may recommend medication or specific training to help keep your child safe. Try to allow for at least six weeks prior to your child beginning their sports activity for a complete sports physical to be completed. This will give your child adequate time to follow up on any items or begin preventative medication therapy, such as allergy medicine, before it is time to hit the field or the court.
If your child has had a regular annual physical, it is still important to have a complete sports physical conducted. A regular physical may not assess specific areas pertinent to your child’s participation in sports.
Lovelace Sports Physicals
We are pleased to offer opportunities in your area for back-to-school and sports physicals.
Albuquerque (Saturdays, 1-3 p.m. Please call 505-823-1010 to schedule an appointment.)
Southwest Medical Associates
Northside – 6100 Pan American NE
Aug. 17 & 31
Westside – 4420 Irving Blvd NW
Aug. 24 & Sept. 7
Roswell (Saturdays, no appointment necessary, please call 505-622-4665 for information.)
Lovelace Urgent Care - 2335 N. Main St.
Aug. 17, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Aug. 23, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Lovelace Health Care Center – 1112 N. Main St.
Aug. 28, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.