What Are Shin Splints? – Orthopedist in Nassau County
Shin splints refer to pain felt at the front of the lower leg, between the knee and ankle. This pain can occur for a variety of reasons but in particular, stress on the shinbone and it’s connective tissues is most common. Over time, these tissues become inflamed and weakened which can lead to severe pain.
At Advanced Orthopedics & Joint Preservation, an Orthopedist in Wantagh Dr. Stanislav Avshalumov and his team will evaluate the condition of your lower leg with a thorough physical examination and potentially an x-ray to rule out stress fractures. Once your evaluation is complete, our team will then determine an individualized plan in order to reduce pain and promote proper healing.
Causes Of Shin Splints
- Sudden changes in physical activity like more intense, more frequent, or longer workouts.
- Participating in strenuous stop-start sports like tennis, soccer, or basketball.
- Shoes that don’t fit well or provide proper support.
- Working out without stretching before and after your workout.
- Weak ankles, hips, or core muscles.
- Flat feet.
Symptoms Of Shin Splints
- Pain along the front or inner part of the lower leg.
- Pain that develops during exercise.
- Pain on either side of the shin bone.
- Muscle pain.
- Numbness and weakness in the feet.
Our Orthopedist in Wantagh may recommend that you:
- Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP).
- Keep your legs elevated.
- Use ice packs to reduce swelling and mild compression to relieve pain.
- Take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory, such as ibuprofen. – Pain medication is helpful for short periods of time but should not be used as a long-term solution.
- Wear elastic compression bandages.
- Use a foam roller to massage your shins.
- Wear orthotics.
- Incorporate stretches.
- Meet with a physical therapist.
- Consider surgery – Although surgery is rarely used to treat shin splints, if your shins splints are causing severe pain lasting for a long period of time, we may recommend surgery.
Preventing Shin Splints
- Change your shoes – Pick shoes that provide more support.
- Gradually increase physical activity in order to avoid added stress.
- Incorporate dynamic stretches prior to getting active and static stretches at the end of periods of high activity.
- Shorten your running stride in order to create less stress on your shins and knees.
- Strengthen your legs.
- Cease activity once the pain is felt in order to prevent injury.
Remember, the most important thing is that you don’t rush back into physical activity. Getting involved with strenuous activity before your shin is fully healed may result in more serious damage. Low – impact activity like swimming or walking are two great exercises that won’t aggravate your shin splints as they are healing.