shin splints

The bone in your lower leg consists of two smaller ones: the larger tibia bone and the smaller fibula bone. Having shin splints refers to pain felt along the tibia bone of the lower leg, medically known as medial tibial stress syndrome. Shin splints are commonly caused by overuse of the lower leg muscles, resulting in small tears. Running on hard surfaces or not wearing well cushioned shoes may also contribute to this condition.

Symptoms of shin splints can include mild swelling, feeling sore, tender, or experiencing pain along the inner shin bone. Pain associated with shin splints may occur during or after exercise, be painful upon touching the affected area, and feel sharp or dull and throbbing. Severe shin splints can be painful even when at rest. If left untreated, shin splints may lead to muscle detaching, small cracks in the shin bone, or even a stress fracture.

Treatment for shin splints can include rest, keeping the affected leg elevated, applying ice, and taking an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory. It also may consist of wearing compression stockings or compression bandages, massaging the affected area or using a foam roller, and gradually returning to physical activities. In severe cases of shin splints, surgery may even be recommended.

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