Joel Embiid, star player of the American basketball team Philadelphia 76ers, injured his right wrist as he was going after an inbound pass during the game on Sunday night against Phoenix Suns. He kept playing after the injury, and had an ice pack on his hand after the game. Luckily, his team won, and x-rays taken after the game were also clean. It is only a sprain which will be alright soon.
Embiid has been lucky, and might just need to rest his wrist for a while. However, basketball is a demanding contact sport, and injuries to the wrist are quite common. An early and thorough evaluation of the injury is very important, followed by prompt treatment. Delayed treatment could lead to poor result, and late rehabilitation or could even render the injury untreatable.
Continuous dribbling and shooting also wear out the muscles in the players’ wrists. Falls can cause wrist injuries, especially because of the natural reflex to land on one’s hands when one falls, which can exert great pressure on the wrist. While playing, the wrist could also get bent forcefully, resulting in a sprain. The repetitive motions while playing basketball can also lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, and there could be severe wrist pain or shaking of the hands.
Putting weight on the injured wrist should be avoided, and ice should be applied immediately to the injury to avoid inflammation. A compression wrap also helps to support the bones and keep the swelling in check.
In case of chronic pain after a fall, it is very important to consult a specialist and have the injury treated. In case of a sprain or fracture, it is very important to get proper medical treatment and to allow the wrist to heal completely before getting back to the sport. The doctor may recommend special exercises or physical therapy or both to help the wrist ease back into action.