A shin splint is a condition characterized by tenderness running along the tibial bone which is the large bone in the lower leg, also referred to as the shin bone. They are the result of an increased amount of repetitive activity, such as running, dancing, walking, or working out that causes the overworking of the tendons, muscles or bone tissue in the lower leg.
Contributing factors of shin splints:
• Poorly fitting shoes
• Weak ankles or hips
• Flat feet
• Failure to warm up prior to exercising
• Lack of support in shoes
Treatment of shin splints requires some time to heal. It is important to give the leg time to rest. In the acute phase, putting ice on the shin for 20-30 minutes every three to four hours for the first few days will help. It may be helpful to take an anti-inflammatory medication to ease the swelling and to help with the discomfort. It is also sometimes helpful to use orthotics, either custom made or over the counter, to give the foot support. Physical therapy is also very helpful to build up muscle strength and also to help ease the discomfort.
Preventing shin splints is as important as treating them. Some of the things you can do to prevent them from occurring are stretching exercises, wearing good shoes, participating in activities that are low impact, add shock absorbing insoles to your footwear.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with an orthopedic physician at Flushing Hospital, please call 718-670-5486.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.