Summer physical activity can mean an increase in injuries By DR. DAVID V. LOPEZ, M.D. FAAOS

Summer physical activity can mean an increase in injuries By DR. DAVID V. LOPEZ, M.D. FAAOS

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It is wonderful to be back in the swing of summer, enjoying the beautiful weather and being active again.

Increased physical activity can mean an increase in injuries, especially if you have been a sofa spud for over a year. Sports account for 2/3 of the hospitalizations that occur outside of the home. In 2019, that totaled 2.3 million injuries.

Now that Covid restrictions have eased, people are more mobile in general, not feeling like they need to be home. That mobility increases the rate of car accidents too.

There have actually been 13 studies, 11 of which met the conclusion showing that the risk of unintentional injuries increases with increasing ambient temperatures. On days with moderate temperatures, the increased risk varied between 0.4% and 5.3% for each 1°C increase in ambient temperature. On extreme temperature days, the risk of injuries decreased.

Take is slow and easy, build up to where you used to/think you should be. Do not forget to warm-up and stretch, hydrate to avoid problems, wear your sunscreen, plan your safety gear, and take breaks as you need to. An avoidable injury or issue can kill the rest of your summer.

In many sports, they advise to keep your eye on the ball. When it comes to your family, keep your eyes on the kids. Many injuries can be avoided with careful supervision, especially around pools, trampolines, and playgrounds.

For youth sports, as a parent you would love to wrap your child in bubble wrap to insulate them from harm. Protective gear is the next best thing.



Many sports require safety equipment. This is a worthy investment to protect life and limb, especially for contact sports like football, basketball, and baseball. It is best if you purchase new equipment, specially fitted for the sports enthusiast rather than borrow some which may not be the latest version or the proper fit.


Yardwork alone presents its own hazards. Gear such as garden hoses, lawn edgers, leaf blowers, pruning shears, wheelbarrows and chainsaws cause 73 percent of injuries (2,325,857), the balance is due to lawn mowers.

And you always have these:

  • Back injuries from heavy lifting
  • Strained muscles from planting or raking.
  • Rotator cuff tendonitis from pruning hedges with heavy sheers
  • Lower back pain from weeding

Bicycles, ATVs, Mopeds and Minibikes should be used age appropriately with any and all safety equipment. These are fast moving and can cause great injury. They are not toys, and need to be treated with the utmost of safety in mind.

Heat related injuries are a concern but are easily avoided if you do your strenuous activity on a cooler day or the cooler part of the day. By all means, STAY HYDRATED and create shade when possible.

If you suffer a sprain or strain, rest, ice and elevate the injured area. Do not use the injured area if it causes pain.

For heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke stop the activity and sit in a cool place (like air conditioning or shade). Drink fluids and avoid strenuous activity for a few hours. Heatstroke is a life-threatening emergency!

Not sure how badly you are injured?


Nothing good will come from ignoring or toughing out an injury.

If you are experiencing health issues, Dr. David Lopez has 2 convenient offices. Awarded NJ Top Doc for 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, and 2014, his extensive training allows him to access your needs and your medical needs to find the best solution for you and your lifestyle.

Little Silver

200 White Road, Suite 101
Little Silver, NJ 07739
Phone (732) 888-2100


3840 Park Avenue, Bldg A, Suite 101,
Edison NJ 08820
Phone (732) 888-2100

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