Summer is officially over, but it has definitely left behind a few victims who will need time to recover from shin splints. Also known as Medial Tibia Stress Syndrome, shin splints refers to the exercise-induced pain in the area between the front of the leg, between the knee and the ankle known as the shin. This phenomenon is most common in runners due to overuse and in people who exercise and play sports and may have recently intensified their training schedule.
In young athletes, shin splints develop gradually and are not due to sudden injuries. Young athletes with flat feet are more prone to shin splints while older athletes who have had an encounter with shin splints are more likely to have a recurring problem with them.
What causes shin splints?
- Running downhill
- A collapsing arch
- Previous leg injury
- Ill-fitting or old running shoes
- Lack of calcium
- An increase in training frequency
- Problems with muscles in the lower leg
- A previous history of shin splints
- Flat feet and over-pronation
What are the symptoms of shin splints?
- Gradual appearance of symptoms
- Pain in the lower leg
- Mild swelling
- Tenderness along the front part of the lower leg
- Pain when toes are bent downward
- Pain that stops after exercising is discontinued and with time, pain becomes continuous
What is the treatment for shin splints?
Surgery is only advised in very severe cases of shin splints, and only when nonsurgical treatment is not effective. Our podiatrist, Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico, who is board certified and a specialist in all pedal problems including reconstructive foot and ankle surgery, offers some good advice regarding nonsurgical treatment for shin splints.
- Avoiding the activity that caused the pain and taking complete rest
- Icing the shin 4 times a day for 20 minutes at a time. Ice should not be applied directly to the skin
- Elevating the feet and legs while resting and at night time
- Taking anti-inflammatory drugs for the pain
- Using corrective shoes and arch supports
At Syracuse Podiatry located in Fayetteville, NY, serving the community of Syracuse, you will receive the best and latest treatment to get you back on your feet. If your shin splints continue to bother you, contact us at (315) 446 3668 to make an appointment with Dr. D’Amico and watch the pain disappear under his capable hands.