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When a doctor may be needed after a sports injury

It can sometimes be hard to know what to do after a sports injury. Do you run to the doctor, or do you just need to tough it out and recover?

This isn't just the diehard attitude of an athlete, but a truly important question. Sports are hard on the body, especially when played at a high level. Aches and pains are normal. There are some things that just need time and rest to heal.

However, it's crucial for athletes to understand that they shouldn't always tough it out. Some signs that could indicate that a trip to the doctor is needed include the following:

-- Pain that doesn't go away, even when you're at rest or sleeping.-- Pain that just keeps getting worse in a progressive fashion.-- Injuries that never heal -- such as swelling that won't go down or bruising that doesn't fade.-- Joint issues that make the joints feel unstable or lock up.

The key, many experts say, is for athletes to understand their own bodies. If they know how they tend to feel after working out and how they typically recover, they can tell when something is out of place or worse than normal. That's when special medical treatment can be needed.

Of course, there are also many sports injuries for which there is no question that medical help is needed, such as mild brain injuries -- like concussions -- and broken bones. However, since many injuries fall into this gray area, athletes need to be aware of how they feel and what they should do at all times.

If you've suffered an injury that was someone else's fault, perhaps due to negligence, you may be able to get compensation in New York.

Source: New York Times, "Sports Injuries: When to Tough It Out," GINA KOLATA, accessed July 15, 2016

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