Shin splints are a painful condition where overuse or strenuous activity has led to inflammation of the muscles, tendons, and tissue that surround your shin bone. The sharp pains usually run along the inner side of your shin. Shin splints are common in runners and athletes that participate in sports that require quick starts and stops such as basketball and tennis. They also can often afflict people who just started exercising at an advanced level.
Shin splints can occur in one or both legs. After resting and icing the affected area, you can return to your normal activities. However, if you just started a new routine or exercise regimen, take it easy and gradually build up your level of activity to prevent shin splints from returning. If shin splints are left untreated and you continue the same activities, further injury can occur. If you think you might have this condition, don’t delay treatment as it could worsen with time or lead to other serious foot problems. Our Royal Palm Beach podiatrists and podiatrists at our other locations can provide a diagnosis and discuss a comprehensive treatment plan for shin splints with you. Call 561-793-6170 to schedule an appointment today or complete the form below.
What are Shin Splints?
Shin splints are a common condition that is exercise-related. Your shins are the front and inner section of your legs between the knee and the ankle. Shin splints are the pain felt along your shins after strenuous exercising such as running or jumping. The pain is a result of inflammation of the muscles, tendons and tissue that surround the tibia, or shin bone. The condition is also called medial tibial stress syndrome. The cause of this inflammation and resulting pain is usually a result of changing up your exercise routine. If you had a particularly strenuous workout or if you just started exercising after a period of non-activity, the result can be painful shin splints. In cases of non-active individuals, a sprint after the family dog can cause shin splints.
Symptoms of Shin Splints
Sharp shooting pains up and down the shinbone characterize shin splints. The area can also be tender, sore, and swollen. The pain is more intense after the activity that caused the inflammation to occur and will feel better after resting, but if not fully healed, the pain will continue to return.
Treatment for Shin Splints
Treatment for shin splints is relatively simple and works to relieve symptoms almost all the time. Treatment just involves rest and icing the affected area. Then new shin splints can be prevented from occurring by gradually building up your exercise routine and waiting for a sufficient amount of time for the shin splints to heal before returning to exercise or sports. Pain usually prevents you from continuing the same activities, however it is important to mention that “playing through the pain” with shin splints is a bad idea because if left untreated it can lead to more problems such as muscle tears, tendonitis, and even stress fractures.
Diagnosing Shin Splints
What should you expect when visiting the South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers for shin splints? There can be a bit of apprehension when visiting a podiatrist in order to find out what is causing the pain in your shins. The South Florida Foot and Ankle Centers doctors’ first priority is to address your area of concern and make you feel comfortable. All of our doctors have specialized training and have a great deal of clinical experience so they are able to give you all of the information that you need to help you make an informed decision, understand the options, and be a part of the treatment plan. A physician will use a physical exam to diagnose shin splints. The doctor will also review your recent activities. An x-ray or MRI might be ordered to get a look at the structures inside your leg.
YOUR NEXT STEPS
Shin splints are a common condition and with proper treatment, shin splints will go away. Taking the right steps when exercising will also prevent shin splints. The podiatrists at South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers have extensive training and clinical experience when it comes to evaluating, diagnosing patients and providing treatment to relieve the pain and discomfort associated with shin splints. We pride ourselves on providing a good experience during your office visits where you are involved in our plan of care.
Don’t live with foot pain or ankle pain another day! Our podiatrists in South Florida and Royal Palm Beach are very experienced in diagnosing and treating shin splints. We accept all major insurance providers. Call 561-793-6170 to schedule an appointment or complete the form below.