What To Do With A Pulled Hamstring?

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A hamstring injury is not uncommon to people—whether you are a sports lover or just a plain old person who loves to watch basketball or football on TV, a hamstring injury is a common scene. For sports buff, especially those who are kings of the basketball court, a hamstring injury is already as common as cough and cold. A hamstring injury, commonly known as pulled hamstring occurs when there is a tear in one or a group of hamstring muscles. The hamstring is basically the muscles behind our lower leg and is very important in flexing and extending the knees as well as the hips.

As common as this condition is to athletes, this can also happen to just anyone else. In fact, even simply walking with those high heels or jogging around without proper warm up routine, can lead to such condition. Here are other common signs and symptoms of hamstring injury:

Signs and Symptoms Hamstring Injury

-          A sharp and shooting pain at the back of the leg indicating a strained muscle group in the hamstring. This sharp pain may be usually accompanied with a popping sound and is commonly felt during a sudden jump, run or other abrupt movement of the hamstring muscles.

-          Pain in the muscle group while bending or extending the knees or the hips. The pain may also be accompanied with spasm, feeling of tightness and tenderness of the area.

-          Swelling of the hamstrings. There may instances when the affected area may appeared to be bruised and during palpation of the area, there may be a palpable separation of muscles or gap.

-          Difficulty walking and moving about.

First Aid for Hamstring Injury

RICE. The Rest-Ice-Compress-Elevate Technique is still the best first aid treatment for a hamstring pull. Cold can lessen the pain and compression can prevent further inflammation and bleeding in the affected area. Resting the affected area will definitely promote timely and speedy healing of the affected group of muscle.

Stretching and Straightening Exercises. Movement is not absolutely prohibited in people with a hamstring injury. In fact, moving the affected area in a tolerable and pain free degree is very helpful first and foremost due to an increased blood flow to the affected area. Such blood flow will nourish the hamstring and promote healing.

Pain Relievers. In instances when pain becomes intolerable, the administration of a pain reliever may be helpful. Muscle relaxants like ibuprofen can help in reducing the pain due to hamstring pulls.

Further diagnostic procedures like X-ray, MRI or CT-Scan may be performed to accurately determine the degree of damage to the hamstring. This is very important most especially if the hamstring pull does not recover or becomes more frequent than ever.

Prevention of Hamstring Injury

No other preventive measure can beat the importance of warm up exercises. Whether or not using the hamstring muscles, a warm up is very essential because it keeps our body toned and ready for stress and pressure. Important hamstring pull prevention warm ups may include stretching and flexing the legs.

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