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What are Shin Splints?
Shin splints, also called Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome, are a common problem in summer time and can be really debilitating.
Shin splints are characterised by pain along the front and usually the inner or medial border of the shin. One or both legs can be affected and usually the pain is diffuse or spread along the line of your shin rather than a particular ‘point tenderness’.
Shin splints are extremely common repetitive strain injury in runners and running athletes. They can also be quite difficult to treat and one modality alone may not provide an ideal solution.
Who Gets Shin Splints?
Shin splints most commonly occur in people who have just started a new activity, e.g. jogging, touch football or netball. Sometimes even a new job with lots of standing or walking can set off this problem.
A Simple Test for Shin Splints
Try this simple acton: Get down on your knees and point your toes out behind you, then sit your weight back onto to your heels. If this pose exacerbates your shin pain, shin splints may be your problem.
If you’re unsure about shin splints, your chiropractor may help diagnose and treat the injury. Also, it can be important to rule out other conditions like a stress fracture in a bone or a compartment syndrome affecting your muscles.
You have to know what you’re dealing with before you can treat it.
What can I do About Shin Splints
First line treatment generally includes a temporary reduction in activity, taking the aggravating factor away will help to reduce inflammation while your shins heal.
Also: Gentle muscle release will often help too. You can use a trigger point ball, foam roller or even just a tennis ball and sit on the ground with legs out in front of you. Put the ball or roller under your calf muscles then roll it about and shuffle around on it. Find a spot that feels tight and painful then gently roll it out, you don’t have to be to tough on yourself for this to help. Work the spot for a minute or so until it starts to feel less painful.
Also: To complement this you might like to try a shoe insert. Cheap unfitted over the counter inserts seem to work about as well as a professionally fitted orthotic for this issue. They help to support your arch and take the stress away from the muscles around your shin and calf, decreasing pain. If an over the counter support device doesn’t then you might have to consider a fitted solution.
Then If you still have trouble consult your health practitioner, they can confirm your problem, come up with a treatment program and help you implement it.
Commit to better health
Chiropractic commonly helps many types of aches, pains and structural dysfunctions. To book a consultation with Dr Paul Calladine (Chiropractor) please contact us today.
To secure your favourite adjustment time please call us today on (02) 9819 6182. See you soon.
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Guest post by Dr. Michael O'Doherty (Chiropractor).