- What is a sports physical?
- Who needs a sports physical?
- When should a sports physical be done?
- What will the doctor do during a sports physical?
- What if I have a chronic medical condition?
- What if I have a physical disability?
- What if I’m pregnant?
- What if I’m taking medication?
- What if I have special needs?
It’s that time of year again! Time to get your sports physicals done so you can participate in the sport of your choice. But what places do sports physicals?
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We all know how important it is to have a regular physical examination by a physician. However, not everyone realizes that certain types of physical examinations are best performed by specific types of medical specialists. For example, a woman who is having a baby should see an obstetrician/gynecologist (OB/GYN), while someone with back pain might be referred to a physiatrist.
Similarly, when it comes to sports physicals, it is important to choose the right type of provider. Family doctors and pediatricians are often able to perform sports physicals, but there are also sports medicine specialists who have additional training in this area. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a provider for your sports physical:
What is a sports physical?
A sports physical is a medical exam that is done to make sure that it is safe for a student to participate in a sport. The exam will check the student’s heart, lungs, musculoskeletal system, and more.
Who needs a sports physical?
There are a few different types of physicals that young athletes may need depending on the sport they are playing and the league they are playing in. A general “wellness” or “sports” physical is typically required for participation in high school athletics. These physicals are usually given by the family doctor, pediatrician, or at sports medicine clinics. For some collegiate and professional sports, a more comprehensive pre-participation physical exam (PPE) is required. This type of exam is usually given by team physicians and looks not only at the athlete’s medical history and current health status, but also at their fitness level and any specific medical needs related to their sport.
When should a sports physical be done?
Sports physicals are an important part of keeping kids healthy and safe while they participate in sports. While most schools require students to have a sports physical before they can participate in sports, there is no one-size-fits-all answer for when these should be done. It depends on the age of the child, their level of participation, and any underlying health conditions.
Here are some general guidelines for when to get a sports physical:
-For children under age 4, a well-child visit with a pediatrician is all that is needed.
-For children ages 4-11, a sports physical should be done every year.
-For children ages 12-15, a sports physical should be done every two years.
-For children over age 15, a physical is only needed if they are starting a new sport or their health status has changed.
What will the doctor do during a sports physical?
The doctor will take a medical history, do a physical exam, and usually give the okay for the athlete to participate in sports.
What if I have a chronic medical condition?
If you have a chronic medical condition, you may need to see your primary care provider for a sports physical. Some conditions that would require this are diabetes, asthma, heart conditions, and more.
What if I have a physical disability?
There are a number of organizations that provide sports physicals for people with physical disabilities. The National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) is one such organization. NSCD provides sports physicals for children and adults with physical disabilities.
What if I’m pregnant?
Q: What if I’m pregnant?
A: Please consult with your OB/GYN to see if they recommend you get a sports physical.
What if I’m taking medication?
If you’re taking medication, you’ll need to bring a list of all your current medications, as well as the dosage and frequency. Make sure you have enough medication to last throughout your sports physical.
What if I have special needs?
Some people have special needs when it comes to sports physicals. For example, people with diabetes or heart conditions may need to see a doctor who specializes in those conditions. If you have any medical conditions, be sure to check with your doctor before you participate in any type of physical activity.