Many athletes experience hip flexor pain as a result of a muscle strain or overstretching in the groin area. An injury can occur when sprinting, kicking, or pivoting, resulting in pain in the area where the thigh meets the hip, and limiting range of motion in the hip joint. Because the hip flexors are used for so many everyday motions and athletic activities, achieving full recovery is critical.
When you are experiencing hip flexor pain, there are a number of steps you can take to help alleviate it. First, consult your physician or physical therapist for his/her treatment recommendations. Immediately after the injury, you might want to take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication that will help reduce pain and swelling. You should also apply cold and compression, ideally with a cryotherapy machine that delivers simultaneous active compression and therapeutic cold at a consistent temperature.
Best Practices for Hip Flexor Pain Treatment
When treating a groin strain injury, it is just as important to know what not to do while you recover. If you are in need of hip flexor pain treatment:
Do not rely on too many pain medications
Although a mild pain medication might be initially recommended, you should not continue to take it for too long after the injury. In addition to the many potential side effects, relying on pain medication throughout your recovery will make it difficult to tell how well your body is healing. If you cannot feel the full effects of certain movements, you also risk lengthening the recovery process or injuring yourself again. When you experience hip flexor pain during recovery, cold therapy is a safe alternative to pain medication.
Do not do too much too soon
Every athlete wants to return to competition as soon as possible after an injury, but doing too much too soon can actually prolong the healing process. Give your body ample time to repair the damaged tissues and be sure to get plenty of rest because your body needs energy to recover. It’s easy to convince yourself that you are ready to return to activity when the pain subsides, but that does not mean that you have fully healed. Work closely with your trainer or physical therapist to make sure your body is ready, even after hip flexor pain treatment has stopped.
Do not set yourself up for future injury
Now that you know how painful and disruptive a hip flexor injury can be, you have more incentive to prevent future injuries. Stretch your hip flexors on a daily basis, especially before and after athletic activity. If you spend most of the day in a seated position, regular stretching is particularly important because your muscles stay in a flexed position for so long that it is easy to overstretch them.
If you are looking for safe and effective hip flexor pain treatment, talk to your doctor or physical therapist about Game Ready. This medication-free system helps relieve pain and reduce swelling so you can return to normal activity faster. Locate a provider near you today to get started.