Shin Splints Treatment: Lessen the Pain

Shin splints involves pain in both the interior and anterior shin muscles. This injury can come on gradually, but quickly develop into a very painful running injury. What is the best shin splints treatment method? It will take a lot of patience and care, but it is possible to get rid of shin splints if you adhere to the following tips.

Causes of Shin Splints Pain

Shin splints occur when runners incorporate increased mileage, intense speed-work, and racing into their training routines without easing into the new workload. Due to the natural inclination for runners to train harder than they should, shin splints are probably the number one injury for beginning runners who are returning to training after a long break.

The Best Shin Splints Treatment

  • RICE: The RICE method is one of the best treatment methods for running injuries, including shin splint pain. The R stands for “Rest.” Due to the fact that shin splint pain is primarily caused by overtraining, the best treatment method is probably to take a few days off from running and allow your body to heal. The next letter, I, stands for “Ice.” The best way to use ice for shin splints treatment is to freeze water in a paper cup. Once frozen, take out the block of ice and roll it over your sore shin area. Try to apply the ice for 10 minutes. The next letter, C, stands for “Compression.” After icing your shin, wrap it in a towel or ace bandage. The final letter, E, stands for “Elevation.” With your shin tightly wrapped, lie on your back and place your leg on a chair. Elevate your compressed leg for at least 10 minutes. For best results, try to use the RICE shin splints treatment method at least 2-3 times per day.

  • NSAIDs: Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs), including aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen, are a great shin splints treatment method. These drugs reduce inflammation in the shin muscle, which helps to relieve pain. Please keep in mind that you should only use NSAIDs for a maximum of two consecutive weeks because this medication can damage your kidneys if overused.

  • Get new shoes: One of the biggest causes for shin splint pain is running in old, worn out running shoes. Old shoes lack the stability and cushioning that help prevent shin pain. Try to buy a new pair of running shoes every 500 miles of running.

  • Stretching: Once your shin pain begins to subside, a good shin splints treatment method is to stretch the shin everyday to increase mobility and lengthen the muscle. Be very careful not to overstretch. One good way to stretch the shin is, while standing, grab the top of the foot of your affected leg as if you were trying to stretch your quad muscles. Try to pull on the top of your foot until you feel a light stretch in your shin. Hold for 30 seconds, rest, and repeat.

  • See a professional: If the above shin splints treatment methods don’t work, the only way to get rid of shin splint pain might be to see a professional sports medicine physician or a physical therapist as soon as possible. Also consider seeing a good massage therapist. Sometimes massage therapists can work wonders in loosening up tight shin muscles and nursing them back to their pre-injury condition. These health professionals can help provide the best shin splints treatment for stubborn injuries.

  • Keep a running log: One great way to prevent shin splint pain is to track your training through a detailed running log. A log is not a shin splints treatment method, but it might provide you with insights into possible training errors that caused your pain. For example, a log could let you know that you improperly increased your mileage too much right before you were injured.

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