Doctor giving young patient a high five in an exam room

A Visit to the Doctor is Worth Your Time

Author: CHKD Sports Medicine, Kaite Pennock, MS, ATC
Published Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2018

By: Kaite Pennock, MS, ATC

“How long should I wait before taking my child to the doctor if they are in pain?” This is a difficult question that many parents of young athletes find themselves asking.

Because young bodies grow and develop differently, and kids start their seasons with varying levels of fitness, the techniques or training intensity that may be tolerated by one athlete, may be too much for another and lead to injury. There are also injuries that are common to specific sports, player positions, or age groups, such as shoulder injuries in youth baseball pitchers or knee injuries in teen soccer players. So, while it may be tempting to assume your child is experiencing normal ‘growing pains,’ or simple muscle soreness from practicing hard, you could be overlooking something more serious.

The medical professionals that make up the sports medicine team at CHKD are trained to look at your child from many angles. So, when you visit our office for an evaluation, our physicians will examine your child’s overall health, not just one injured area. They will review your family history, examine the health of your child’s bones, check growth plates, listen for signs of anxiety or depression, and watch for risk factors of disease or autoimmune conditions that could contribute to your child’s symptoms. We can use tools like advanced imaging, if necessary, to rule out more serious issues. In addition, recommendations for rehabilitative exercises or medication from a sports medicine expert can decrease your child’s pain more effectively and shorten downtime from the activities they love.

CHKD’s sports medicine program has a team of specialists to handle all of your young athlete’s needs. From certified athletic trainers in every doctor’s office to physical therapy, performance training, sports nutrition and weight management programs, CHKD has all the tools to keep your child active and performing at their best. Don’t delay your child’s care by making a guess as to the cause of their pain; bring them to us and feel at ease knowing they are receiving quality care tailored specifically to young athletes. For more information on the specialized services we offer, visit or call 757-668-7529 (PLAY) to schedule an appointment.

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About CHKD Sports Medicine

CHKD's sports medicine program offers the most comprehensive care for your young athlete. From diagnosis and treatment to customized rehabilitation plans, we specialize in physical therapy and injury prevention programs for active children and teens. Our team is composed of pediatric orthopedic surgeons, sports medicine specialists, physician assistants, certified athletic trainers and pediatric sports medicine physical therapists.