How Long Will it Take My Injury to Heal?
One of the first things most people think about after an injury or surgery is, how long will the recovery time be?
While sometimes recovery can only take a couple days or weeks, more intrusive injuries can take months or even a couple years to fully recover from.
Below is a chart based on AVERAGE recovery times for different injuries (photo image courtesy of @drcalebburgess via Instagram)
As you can see muscle soreness has the shortest recovery time with only a few days of recovery. To relieve muscle soreness remember to always stretch before AND after workouts, roll out sore muscle areas with a foam roller, ball or stick, adding ice/heat when needed for extra relief.
Muscle strain and ligament sprains will take longer; anywhere from a couple days to a couple weeks depending on the severity. Resting, switching between ice and heat, and staying elevated are essential for initial strains/sprains. You can go directly to your physical therapist to assess.
Tendon and bone injuries are more severe than a strain or sprain. Seeing a physician for this type of injury should be done immediately after injury occurs. An outpatient program of physical therapy will most likely be part of your recovery which will give you the tools needed to regain muscle strength, movement and overall health.
Cartilage repair and ligament grafs are the most time sensitive on this chart. This will have required surgery and outpatient programs including physical therapy. Your physician and physical therapist will have created a specified program for you and your specific injury filled with manual therapy, at home exercises, ice/heat/electrical stimulation sessions and possible massage therapy.
Always speak to your physician/physical therapist directly when it comes to your injury/situation. All issues can heal differently and on a different timeline than above. It is important to give yourself the right time and care needed to fully recover.