Muscle Sprains and Strains (cont.)

Can sprains and strains be prevented?

There are many things people can do to help lower their risk of sprains and strains:

  • Maintain a healthy, well-balanced diet to keep muscles strong.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Practice safety measures to help prevent falls (for example, keep stairways, walkways, yards, and driveways free of clutter, and salt or sand icy patches in the winter).
  • Wear shoes that fit properly.
  • Replace athletic shoes as soon as the tread wears out or the heel wears down on one side.
  • Do stretching exercises daily.
  • Be in proper physical condition to play a sport.
  • Warm up and stretch before participating in any sports or exercise.
  • Wear protective equipment when playing.
  • Avoid exercising or playing sports when tired or in pain.
  • Run on even surfaces.

Where can I find more information about sprains and strains?

  • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases Information Clearinghouse
    NIAMS/National Institutes of Health
    1 AMS Circle
    Bethesda, MD 20892-3675
    Phone: 301/495-4484
    TTY: 301/565-2966
    Fax: 301/718-6366

The clearinghouse provides information on arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases. Additional information and updates can also be found on the NIAMS Web site.
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
    P.O. Box 2058
    Des Plaines, IL 60017
    Phone: 800-824-BONE (2663) (free of charge)

The academy provides education and practice management services for orthopaedic surgeons and allied health professionals. It also serves as an advocate for improved patient care and informs the public about the science of orthopaedics. The orthopaedist's scope of practice includes disorders of the body's bones, joints, ligaments, muscles, and tendons. For a single copy of an AAOS brochure, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to the address above or visit the AAOS Web site.

Sprains and strains key words

  • Acute
  • Chronic
  • Femur
  • Fibula
  • Inflammation
  • Joint
  • Ligament
  • Muscle
  • Range of motion
  • Tendon
  • Tibia

SOURCE: Portions of the above information was provided with the kind permission of the National Institutes of Health (

Last Editorial Review: 3/2/2010 9:55:04 AM

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