Help For Shin Splints – North Adelaide Orthotics
Shin splints are commonly the result of fallen or low arches is a common condition seen in our orthotic shop. North Adelaide Orthotics offer custom orthotic solutions for a range of painful problems throughout our local and surrounding Walkerville, Medindie, Bowden, Croydon communities.
What are Shin Splints?
Tibial stress syndrome, or shin splints, is a condition presenting infrequently at The Orthotic Shop, however it can be one of the most painful and debilitating. Shin splints occur because the muscles in your legs are over-loaded and fatigued.
There are two types of shin splints:
- anteriolateral (front and outside of the shin)
- posteriomedial (the inside of the shin above the ankle)
The muscles in these compartments work very hard at controlling your foot posture and absorbing shock. If they are unable to complete these functions, micro tears occur in the tissue resulting in inflammation and significant pain around your shin. The most effective way to resolve tibial stress syndrome is by understanding the condition and addressing the underlying causes.
Causes of Shin Splints
Shin splints are generally either the result of overloading the muscles of the lower limb, or most commonly, biomechanical irregularities.
Other factors which may contribute to the development of shin splints include:
- Sudden increase in activity (work, social, or sport)
- Poor foot posture (feet roll in when you walk)
- Excessive weight or sudden weight gain
- Poor footwear
- Inflexibility and tightness (calf muscles)
- Muscle weakness (core muscles)
- Activity on hard surface
Signs You May Have Shin Splints
Some of the indications that you may have shin splints are:
- Tenderness and possible swelling in the shin
- Pain at the beginning and end of activity
- Pain may ease or be dull during activity
Management of Shin Splints
In order to successfully manage shin splints, it is important to address the cause of the problem rather than simply managing the symptoms. Employing the latest technology and biomechanical assessment techniques, we are able to identify those tissues under excessive load allowing us to develop a comprehensive treatment plan to address your specific needs. Typically your plan will involve biomechanical correction, self-management strategies, and modalities that address any structural imbalance.
Treatment options for shin splints include:
- Rest and electrophysical agents (cold therapy, ultrasound)
- Orthotics (aids with shock absorption and biomechanics)
- Stretching (calf muscles)
- Motion control running shoes
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Activity modification
Shin splints will not improve without intervention and identification of the true contributing factors. Delaying appropriate management of shin splints can lead to complications and an extended period of unnecessary pain. If not addressed, these changes will continue and lead to secondary complications both locally and further up the biomechanical chain and can result in knee, hip or back pain.
Important: Left untreated shin splints may lead to stress fractures of the tibia.
To help improve your shin splints and ensure that you get back to your best as quickly as possible, the following steps can be taken:
- Watch the self-assessment video and analyse your foot posture.
- Consider the causes of low arches above, and determine which may be relevant to your particular situation.
- Arrange a free lower limb biomechanical assessment (valued at $79). Simply click on the free gait analysis button below to download your free voucher and start addressing your pain today.