Prompt Treatment for Muscle Strains in Glastonbury, CT

Picture of a man with a muscle strain holding his lower back in pain.

Are you experiencing pain or tenderness, possibly accompanied by swelling, bruising, or muscle spasms? Do your muscles feel weak, and is it difficult to move that area of your body? These can all be signs of a muscle strain (commonly referred to as a “pulled muscle”), an injury that occurs when a muscle or tendon overstretches or tears. Although muscle strains can occur anywhere in the body, they commonly affect the lower back and the hamstrings.

Luckily, if you’re in Glastonbury, Connecticut, or the surrounding area, you can rely on PhysicianOne Urgent Care for muscle strain treatment. Since our practice was founded in 2008, we’ve earned a reputation for delivering top-quality care with ease and speed, and our providers have extensive experience treating muscle strains.

Muscle Strains vs. Joint Sprains

Many people use the terms “strain” and “sprain” interchangeably, but they actually refer to two different injuries. As was noted above, a strain occurs when a muscle or tendon (which connects muscle to bone) overstretches or tears. A sprain, on the other hand, occurs when a ligament (which holds bones together) overstretches or tears.

Strains and sprains can produce similar symptoms, including pain, bruising, swelling, and difficulty moving the area that was injured. If you’re experiencing muscle weakness, cramping, or spasms, chances are good that you may have strained a muscle. But if you heard or felt something pop when you injured yourself, you more likely sprained a joint.

How to Prevent Muscle Strains

In some cases, muscle strains are caused by one singular event. For example, using improper lifting techniques to pick up something heavy can lead to a muscle strain. To prevent injuries like this, be sure to keep your feet shoulder width apart, squat down (rather than bending over), keep your back straight, move slowly, and hold the item close to your body. You should also avoid twisting your back when lifting or carrying a heavy object.

In other instances, muscle strains are caused by repetitive motions (e.g., throwing, gripping, or jumping). To prevent this type of injury, be sure to warm up and stretch before working out or playing a sport. Participating in strength training can also lower your chances of straining a muscle.

Treating Muscle Strains at Home With the RICE Method

Most muscle strains don’t require medical attention and can instead be effectively treated at home using the RICE method:

  • Rest – This doesn’t mean that you need to stop all physical activity, but be sure to avoid any movements that cause pain or swelling.
  • Ice – Apply an ice pack to the injured area for 15 minutes at a time every two to three hours for a few days following the injury.
  • Compression – Wrap the injured area with an elastic bandage to help reduce swelling. Be sure not to wrap it too tightly, though, since doing so could inhibit circulation.
  • Elevation – Raise the injured area above the level of your heart to help decrease swelling.

With proper care, mild muscle strains often heal within about three to six weeks.

When to Seek Medical Attention for a Muscle Strain

Although most muscle strains can be treated at home, there are certain instances when strains require medical care. You should consult with a professional if:

  • Your pain is intolerable
  • You’re experiencing numbness or tingling
  • Your symptoms worsen despite at-home treatment attempts

Visit PhysicianOne Urgent Care for Muscle Strain Treatment

If you’re experiencing the muscle strain symptoms listed above, you can turn to PhysicianOne Urgent Care for treatment. Our Glastonbury urgent care center is open 365 days per year during extended hours, and we always accept walk-ins. You’ll be seen by one of our experienced medical practitioners, who will ask how your injury occurred and inquire about the symptoms you’re experiencing. They may recommend X-rays to rule out a fracture, in which case you’ll be glad to know that we have on-site X-ray capabilities.

Plus, if we’re closed or you don’t feel up to leaving the house, you can still get the care you need using our integrated 24/7 telehealth service. During your virtual visit, you’ll speak to a local provider from the comfort of home, and they’ll offer advice on how to care for your muscle strain. And if they determine that you need in-person treatment, they’ll schedule a time for you to visit our Glastonbury urgent care center.

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Throughout the visit I felt like the staff really cared. The doctor took his time talking with me about my symptoms, and I felt like he listened to all my concerns and took that into consideration when recommending the right treatment. Thank you!
Hamden, CT
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