School sports offer a fun way for kids of all ages to socialize and stay healthy. Your child needs to get a sports physical to ensure they are healthy enough to participate in competitive sports. Here are a few details you should know about sports physicals and what information is required.
What Is a Sports Physical?
Sports physical exams, also known as a preparticipation physical examination or PPE, is an exam performed by a medical professional to determine if it is safe for an athlete to participate in a particular sport. Most states now require kids and teens to have a sports physical before joining the school sports team for the season. Even if it isn’t needed, most doctors will recommend that everyone playing on a sports team gets one.
What Information Is Required?
When you arrive at the facility, you will be asked to fill out a sports physicals form. The doctor performing the exam will need to know about the patient’s medical history before performing a physical exam. This history includes information about any serious illnesses among your family members and any diseases the patient currently has or had in the past, such as asthma, epilepsy, or diabetes.
You will need to discuss any allergies, including insect bites, and past injuries such as sprains, bone fractures, or concussions. It’s essential to tell the doctor if the patient has ever felt dizzy, fainted, had trouble breathing during exercise, or had chest pain.
Finally, you should also inform the doctor of any medications the patient is taking, including any over-the-counter drugs, herbal supplements, and prescription medication.
What Happens During the Physical Examination?
During the physical, the doctor will record the height and weight of the patient. They will take their vital signs, such as their pulse and blood pressure, to measure their heartrate and rhythm. They will check the heart, lungs, ears, nose, throat, and abdomen. They will also do a vision exam. Finally, the doctor evaluates the patient’s strength, flexibility, posture, and joints.
While most of the physical exam is the same for male and female athletes, if the child has started puberty, the doctor may ask several questions about their health. For instance, girls may be asked about their diet and period to ensure they do not have a common condition known as female athlete triad, which is a combination of absent periods, poor nutrition, and weak bones. The doctor may also ask about drug and alcohol use and ask if the patient is taking any dietary supplements such as performance enhancers, weight-loss supplements, or steroids.
Why Are Sports Physicals Important?
Sports physicals are important because the doctor can advise the athlete on avoiding injuries and healthy training tips. It can also help the physician identify any underlying health issues that may interfere with the patient’s ability to participate in sports. For instance, if the child has asthma, the doctor may be able to prescribe a better inhaler that would prevent frequent asthma attacks or adjust their dosage so the player can breathe easily while running.
Schools will often offer to give sports physicals on their premises, but you always have the option to go to your preferred facility.
Find a Facility for a Sports Physical Near Me
Is it time for your child’s sports physical? Get in touch with us here at BASS Urgent Care for assistance. Our medical professionals can perform a physical examination and make sure your child is healthy enough to play for their school’s team. Call us at (925) 329-3718 for more details.