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Groin pain is often caused by an injury around the thigh and groin resulting from over-stretching leg muscles on the sports field. Pain can occur in both men and women, but it can be more severe in men if the testicular area suffers injury. In our physiotherapy clinic in Dublin 4, we deal with a large number of these sporting-type injuries and have put together a list of causes and treatments for you to diagnose and treat with self care. However, if you have severe prolonged pain, we recommend you visit your GP to rule out non-muscular issues and visit us for a consultation.
In Ireland, football, rugby and hockey are the biggest criminals when it comes to sports injuries. Activities like these cause stress on your thigh and groin muscles and will from time to time result in a groin pull. Groin pain can occur immediately after injury or gradually over a few weeks, and will worsen with continued use. A sudden jerk of the leg, or twisting of muscle during play, may cause a popping or snapping feeling followed by severe pain. The pain can range from mild to severe and can start in your upper thigh and run up to your pubic bone.
Because muscles have been torn and are now weakened, the pain may ache even at rest and any movement of the leg will cause agony. Symptoms include pain when bringing your knees together or when raising them. Luckily, most groin pain caused by sports injuries should ease after a few days and is easily treatable.
Physiotherapists will tell you that self care begins with prevention. Having stronger muscles that are more flexibly will reduce injury but like many sports injuries, it is never completely avoidable. After injury it is best to completely rest the area and place an ice pack or bag of frozen peas on the sore area for 20 to 30 minutes two to four times a day. If the pain is too severe, take an over-the-counter pain killer for the short term relief.
If the groin pain and injury is mild, gentle stretching such as squats that stretch your legs apart and allow your knees to move outwards will help. But these should not be painful.
A physiotherapist will help to speed up the relief of pain through injury in most cases. Massage, exercise and stretching through the guidance of a sports physiotherapists will get you back on your feet and back on to the playing field.