Stay Active With Chiropractic Care and Shin Splints
By Donna Stark
We have ophthalmologists, rheumatologists, and cosmetologists, but if you are a runner and experience pain in the front of your lower legs, you probably wish there were "shinologists" too. Shin splints are definitely the worst, aren't they? The pain that is caused by them has been known to stop runners dead in their tracks and is usually enough to derail any fitness enthusiast's goals. Fortunately, they will heal, and with the help of your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic, you can still stay active during that healing process.
What Is a Shin Splint?
Generally speaking, a shin splint is usually associated with strenuous and repetitive motions that place strain, tension, or pressure on a person's shinbone as well as the muscles and tendons in the surrounding area. Symptoms include pain, tenderness, soreness, swelling, numbness, and weakness. It's important to know that although most shin splints are not serious in nature, they will take some time to heal. So, if you don't want to be sidelined for days, or even weeks, you need to take the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of them occurring in the first place.
Shin Splint Precautions
There are several things you can do that may reduce your risk of getting shin splints. Take a look at a few of them below.
- Choose shoes that fit well and provide great support
- Invest in a good pair of shock-absorbing insoles
- Avoid running or training on hard surfaces or uneven terrain
- Increase the intensity of your workouts gradually
- Warm up and stretch before exercising
- Incorporate calf and hip strength training exercises to your fitness routine
- Shorten your running stride
- Vary your workouts
- Stop exercising as soon as pain presents itself
How to Treat Them
You certainly want to treat your shin splints sooner than later, so take a look at the following suggestions on how you can do so at home.
- Elevate your legs
- Apply ice packs for swelling
- Take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory painkiller
Although it is important to refrain from physical activity when treating your shin splints, that doesn't mean you need to stop all physical activity. You can still participate in exercise as long as it doesn't cause any more harm or pain to your legs (swimming is a great option here).
See Your Chiropractor Too
We've already established that there are no "shinologists," but if you are unsure of what exercises or stretches are appropriate to participate in while waiting for your shin splints to heal, your local chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic are the ones to see. After all, there is no better way to heal and prepare your body for physical activity than chiropractic care, so come on in and see them today!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Portland, Ore.