A groin pull — or groin strain — arises from putting too much stress on muscles in your groin and thigh. If these muscles are tensed too powerfully or too all of a sudden, they can get over-stretched or torn.
Groin pulls prevail in people who play sports that need a lot of running and jumping. In specific, suddenly jumping or changing direction is a likely cause. Groin pulls frequently appear in people who play soccer and football, and they make up about 10% of all injuries in expert hockey players.
What Does a Groin Pull Feel Like?
Here are some symptoms of a groin pull:
- Pain and tenderness in the groin and the inside of the thigh
- Pain when you bring your legs together
- Pain when you raise your knee
- A popping or snapping feeling during the injury, followed by severe pain
Groin pulls are typically divided into 3 degrees of severity:
- 1st degree: Mild pain, but little loss of strength or motion
- 2nd degree: Moderate pain, moderate to moderate strength loss and some tissue damage
- 3rd degree: Severe pain, severe loss of strength and function due to a total tear of the muscle
To identify a groin pull, your doctor will give you an extensive physical examination. Tests like X-rays and MRIs (magnetic resonance imaging) might be had to eliminate other problems.
Which Muscle Group Is Involved When a Pulled Groin Occurs?
Answer is thigh adductors. Adductors are any muscles which help to draw a body part toward the median of the body. There are adductor muscles in different parts of the body to assist in that movement.
Four muscles on the inside of the thigh are quite large and considered to be important adductors. They are: Adductor Brevis, Adductor Longus, Adductor Magnus, and Sartorius. Gracilis is also sometimes included in this group, but it is not in the illustration.
These muscles come from numerous areas of the pelvis and insert into the femur or the tibia.
Their main function is to adduct the thigh (i.e. bring the leg toward the midline of the body), however they also help in flexing and medially turning the thigh.
What’s the Treatment for a Groin Pull?
Happily, a groin pull will usually heal on its own. You just have to provide it a long time and rest. To speed the recovery, you can:
- Ice the inside of your thigh to minimize pain and swelling. Experts suggest doing it for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours for 2 to 3 days, or up until the pain is gone.
- Compress your thigh using an elastic bandage or tape.
- Take anti-inflammatory pain relievers. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen and naproxen, will aid with pain and swelling. But research studies show their results are controversial specifically if taken long-term. Additionally, these drugs can have side effects; they ought to be used just occasionally unless your doctor particularly states otherwise.
- To assist tissue recovery, your medical service provider will assist you in active stretching and reinforcing exercises. Depending on grade of injury, this can begin instantly or might require numerous days of rest. Pain is used as a guide. Too aggressive and more damage might occur.
The majority of the time, these conservative treatments will suffice. However not always. If these strategies still don’t help, you might wish to consider surgery. While surgery may provide you relief, it’s a last option. Not everyone can go back to their previous level of activity later.
So talk over the pros and cons of surgery with your doctor. You need to likewise consider getting a consultation.
Returning to Normal Activity After Treatment
Everybody would like to know how quickly they can return in the game after a groin pull — and how quickly the pain will go away. However there’s no easy answer. Recovery time depends on how severe your groin pull is. It may take 4 to six weeks, but that’s simply a rough price quote. People heal at various rates.
In the meantime, switch to a new activity that won’t put excessive stress on your groin muscles. For example, runners could try swimming.
Whatever you do, don’t hurry things. Don’t try to go back to your old level of exercise up until:
- You can move your leg on the injured side as easily and as easily as your other leg
- The leg on your hurt side feels as strong as the leg on the unimpaired side
- You feel no pain when you walk, jog, run, or jump
If you begin pushing yourself before your groin pull is healed, you might re-injure yourself. And if you get further groin pulls, they may be harder to treat and take longer to heal. They can even cause irreversible special needs.
How Can I Prevent Groin Pulls?
Given that groin pulls can be painful and incapacitating, the best suggestions is to prevent them. You ought to:
- Always warm up your legs and groin muscles before physical activity. A light jog or other activities to increase body temperature have actually been revealed to minimize risk of muscle spots.
- Wear shoes with good assistance that fit well.
- Always increase the intensity of your exercise gradually — no more than a 10% boost a week.
- Stop working out if you feel pain or tightness in your groin or the inside of your thigh.
- Do regular reinforcing exercises for your thigh muscles, particularly if you’ve had a groin pull previously.
Groin injuries can arise from included stress due to weak point somewhere else. If included you’re in sports and you have a history of groin injuries, ask your physician about activities that can help in reducing your risk.