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How Do I Know If I Have Soft Tissue Damage?

Recovering from an accident or sports injury? Aside from obvious injuries like broken bones, many people suffer from soft tissue injuries when the body’s ligaments, muscles, or tendons experience sudden trauma.

People can even experience soft tissue injuries when they fail to let their muscles fully recover from a grueling workout. The pattern of wearing down the muscles without allowing sufficient rest can cause the muscles to experience strain and trauma. Read on to learn about the common types of soft tissue injuries and how to know if you’re suffering from one.

Common Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue injuries can occur anywhere in the body, but parts like the ankles, knees, and wrists are particularly vulnerable. These body parts have joints that can turn inward, especially when you land sharply or twist during a fall. The sudden impact places tension on nearby ligaments, resulting in sprains, one of the most common types of soft tissue injuries.

Strains, on the other hand, affect muscles and tendons. This common soft tissue injury occurs when fibrous tissue is stretched too far, causing it to tear. Other soft tissue injuries include contusions, tendonitis, and bursitis. There’s one thing they all have in common—they often take an extended time to heal, and improper healing can impact the body’s future performance.

How Soft Tissue Injuries Occur

Soft tissue injuries fall into two categories: acute injuries and overuse injuries. Acute injuries involve sudden trauma like falls or sharp blows to a particular body part. Overuse injuries like tendonitis, bursitis, and some strains occur due to repetitive actions and failure to let muscles and tendons in the body fully recover. 

Signs of Soft Tissue Injury

Unsure whether you’re dealing with a soft tissue injury? If you’ve recently experienced an impact injury, chances are you have some form of soft tissue damage. As your body works hard to repair and recover, the process starts with inflammation. Some of the common symptoms of a soft tissue injury include:

  • Mild heat 
  • Pain in and around the area
  • Redness
  • Swelling

Recovering From a Soft Tissue Injury

Minor soft tissue injuries can heal with the right combination of rest, ice, compression, and elevation. You should stay off the joint or muscle as much as possible during recovery.

Often, though, this method is only the start of healing. Many soft tissue injuries require medical treatment—it all depends on your age, overall health, and habits. Here are some of the situations that require medical attention:

  • If you experience continued swelling in the affected area
  • If you can’t bear weight on the affected area
  • If you can’t move a joint without pain or discomfort

Recover From a Soft Tissue Injury the Right Way

In some cases, when soft tissue injuries aren’t treated properly, they can lead to lifelong disability and other severe health outcomes. Understanding how to handle these injuries is critical to proper healing and seeking medical attention can make the difference in getting you back to doing what you love as soon as possible. The medical team at Impact Medical Group of Port Richey is standing by to help you recover from a soft tissue injury. Take the first step toward recovery today by calling us at (727) 848-3377 to schedule your free consultation.