Shin splints are among the most common sports injuries, and while they can be quite painful, they are usually remedied easily.
Dr. Joseph Congeni, director of sports medicine at Akron Children’s Hospital, recently explained shin splints and how to deal with them on The Ray Horner Morning Show on WAKR 1590 AM (listen to the full interview below).
Shin splints are basically inflammation of overworked muscles, brought on by running or other vigorous activity.
Dr. Congeni said shin splints keep school athletic trainers busy, especially this time of year as winter weather subsides.
“Kids are running outside after being inside for a while. 25% to 35% of kids will experience some kind of shin pain,” he said.
If your child experiences aching or throbbing, typically along the inner border of the shin, Dr. Congeni recommends these steps:
- Ice the area for at least 12 minutes.
- Adopt calf-stretching exercises and do them before running.
- Taping the arch or arch supports sometimes helps by taking stress off the shinbone.
By taking care of the injury, symptoms usually subside in 1 to 14 days. If the pain persists, your child should be evaluated for a possible stress fracture, which are tiny cracks in the bone.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says building a fitness level slowly and wearing proper-fitting athletic shoes can help prevent shin splints.