Call Us Now

Committed athletes and workout buffs like to think that nothing can prevent them from being active. However, at some point, the inevitable happens and injury occurs, requiring days, weeks, or even months of rest by the athlete. One of the most common injuries athletes experience is shin splints. Shin splints can be avoided with the right techniques but often times it takes experiencing shin splints in order to be able to avoid them in the future. 

What makes shin splints such a threatening condition that most athletes want to avoid it at all costs? The answer is simple – pain. Shin splints cause nagging and stabbing pain in the front of the leg that is difficult to ignore, especially when it makes people stop exercising and ruins their training results. Although the condition is fairly common, most people still don’t know how to approach and resolve it. Luckily, we are here to tell you everything about shin splints causes, treatments, and prevention

What are Shin Splints?

Shin splints are also known as medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS). The term is used to describe pain in the front of the lower leg and inside of the lower leg, next to the shin bone (tibia). The pain is often persistent and worsens as athletes intensify the workout. The more stress is put on the leg, the more pain a person endures. Along with stopping the training and going through the full recovery process, the consequences of shin splints can lead to even more severe injuries. 

Here are some of the most common shin splints symptoms

If any of these shin splints symptoms persist after treatments and become worse even when you’re resting, contact your doctor. Severe pain after an injury or visibly swollen leg can be a sign of a critical condition that requires immediate action. 

What Causes Shin Splints?

Shin splints causes are many, but most of them come from the excessive force put on the shin bone and surrounding tissues. The pressure on the bone leads to muscle swelling, inflammation, and pain. Simply put, overuse causes shin splints in runners, gymnasts, dancers, military recruits, and overall, everyone who enjoys regular exercising. Common shin splints causes go as it follows:

You’re also at a higher risk of developing shin splints if you:

All these things cause stress on the tibia and surrounding muscles, resulting in inflammation and pain. If your muscles are not strong enough to adapt to training changes and they become tired and fatigued, you are more likely to develop shin splints.

Shin Splints Treatment

Doctors run several tests to diagnose shin splints. They look at how a person walks and examine the lower leg, ankle, and foot to determine the cause of pain and inflammation. If doctors are concerned, they might order magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or bone scan. When tests turn out to be positive, you’ll be instructed to take certain treatments. 

To relieve your symptoms, doctors might recommend the following:

Tips for Shin Splints Prevention

Physical Therapy Can Help With Shin Splints

If you already tried everything mentioned above and can see the end of your problem, consider physical therapy. A physical therapist can aid in the treatment of shin splints by giving you a professional assessment of the issue and options for resolving it. Your body might need an individualized program that includes massages, exercises, balance training, electrical therapy, and other treatments to decrease the pain and reduce injury. Only a professional can provide this and help you feel relief from shin splints at last. 

Desert Edge PT specializes in all the common ailments and injuries you can think of. We help athletes find their way back to an active lifestyle after injuries, surgeries, and many other life situations. To schedule a free consultation and assessment, get in touch with one of our experts. We are here to provide the support you need!

published on Friday, February 19th, 2021