Sports Physicals Q & A In Fort Wayne, IN
What are sports physicals?
A sports physical, or preparticipation physical exam, is a screening procedure used to determine if it's safe for your child to play a certain sport. Most school districts and youth sports organizations require their participants to undergo a sports physical before starting a new season.
Even if your child's school or sports league doesn't require a sports physical, the American Academy of Pediatrics still recommends one.
What happens during a sports physical appointment?
Sports physicals at Pediatric Associates, Inc. feature two main components:
The medical history portion of a sports physical gleans information about your child's overall health and family history. Some of the questions your child's provider might ask include:
- Are there any serious illnesses that run in your family?
- Do you take any prescription medications?
- Have you undergone surgery or been hospitalized?
- Do you have any allergies? If so, what are they?
- Have you suffered any sports-related injuries in the past?
Parents are encouraged to be active participants in their child's visit to ensure the team receives all of the information they need.
During the physical exam component of a sports physical, your child's pediatrician:
- Records your child's height and weight
- Takes your child's blood pressure and pulse
- Evaluates your child's posture, strength, joints, and flexibility
- Examines your child's nose, ears, eyes, and throat
- Assesses your child's cardiovascular and pulmonary health
Sports physicals are usually the same for boys and girls, but if your child has already gone through puberty, their provider may ask different questions. For example, if your daughter is heavily involved in active sports, they might ask about her menstrual cycle and diet.
Following the exam, your child's pediatrician fills out and signs a form. Your child can present this form to their school or sports league, allowing them to move forward with practice and games.
Why are sports physicals important?
Sports physicals are important because they can help your child learn about health problems that can interfere with athletic activity. For example, if your child has asthma, they might find it challenging to play at full capacity. By adjusting their medication, it may be possible to ease symptoms and improve their performance on the court or playing field.
Your child's pediatrician can also provide them with training tips that can lower their risk of injury, including advice on stretching, warming up, and cooling down.