Wimbledon causes the number of summer injuries to soar in the UK

Wimbledon causes the number of summer injuries to soar in the UK
Wimbledon and the recent heatwave have contributed to a rise in summer injuries (Photo: Shutterstock)

The last few weeks have been an exciting time in the world of sport and, coupled with the recent heatwave, spirits in Britain have been particularly high this summer.

But recent events have also brought with them a wave of seasonal injuries.

Health problems set to soar

According to new research, a fifth of Brits have been inspired by Wimbledon, and will be picking up a tennis racket for a game themselves.

But the impromptu rush to get outdoors and soak up the sun is contributing to more than three quarters of Brits (40 million adults) sustaining a seasonal injury, say Bupa Health Clinics.

Failing to warm up correctly before participating in sport, over-estimating fitness levels and not applying enough sun cream for the hot weather have been among the most common contributors to the ailments.

Sprains, muscle and ligament tears, and broken bones are among the biggest summer health problems, according to Bupa Health Clinics (Photo: Shutterstock)
Sprains, muscle and ligament tears, and broken bones are among the biggest summer health problems, according to Bupa Health Clinics (Photo: Shutterstock)

With the Wimbledon final almost here and the sunshine set to continue, Bupa Health Clinics are urging Brits to take the necessary precautions to avoid getting injured this summer.

“A friendly game of sport could become much more serious if someone hasn’t been active for a while and jumps straight into it,” says Dr Luke Powles, GP at Bupa Health Clinics.

“It’s important that we take the necessary precautions, and warm up and down properly while undertaking physical activity.

“For those getting into the Wimbledon spirit, be wary that ankle sprains are one of the most common tennis injuries, largely caused by the quick movement of the game.

“Playing tennis in the current heatwave can also result in sunburn or heatstroke, so it’s vital that tennis enthusiasts stay hydrated and protected from the sun.”

The most common summer injuries

Alongside common seasonal allergies, stings and bites, outdoor sports and activities have contributed to as many as a fifth of summer injuries, with the biggest common including:

  • Sunburn
  • Sprains
  • Muscle and ligament tears
  • Broken bones
  • Burns

Dealing with sunburn

If you suffer from sunburn after playing sport in the hot weather, the NHS advises taking the following steps to help relieve your symptoms:

  • Have a cold bath or show to cool your skin, or apply a cold flannel
  • Apply lotions containing aloe vera to soothe and moisturise your skin
  • Drink plenty of fluids to cool down and prevent dehydration
  • Take painkillers, such as ibuprofen or paracetamol, to relieve the pain

Failing to cover up while playing sport outdoors has contributed to suffering sunburn in the heat (Photo: Shutterstock)
Failing to cover up while playing sport outdoors has contributed to suffering sunburn in the heat (Photo: Shutterstock)

Treating minor injuries

The general advice is for minor injuries is to follow the PRICE guidelines:

  • Protection – If it’s not possible to rest completely , the injury should be protected with braces, tape and – for lower limb injuries – by using crutches
  • Rest – Offloading and avoiding the movement that caused the injury is advised
  • Ice – Applying ice is very effective in relieving pain and reducing any swelling
  • Compression – Cohesive bandaging is good at providing compression to the injured area and can be easily adjusted and reapplied
  • Elevation – Elevating the injured limb will help limit the swelling.