How to deal with shin splints while running

Shin splints are one of the most common injuries that runners and athletes encounter. The Shin pain starts from the front side of the Shin bone and leads to the back side of the Shin.

Either you a runner or the person who loves jogging around the neighborhood, if you are experiencing Shin pain then we can imagine how worse it can be.  If you really look forward to keep on enjoying your running then Running shoes for shin Splints is one of the best options.

Shin splint is a pain that emerges from the lower leg the Shin bone, and not only runners or athletes but even dancers can face this pain. 

What causes Shin Splints?

There are number of factors that can cause Shin splints and some of them are mentioned below.

  • Running on inclined or hard surfaces can add to the strain on your legs.
  • Not using the right technique while running makes your leg muscles work harder to keep the foot stabilized. 
  • For the beginner runners Shin splint can be a problem because they try to build up their mileage too soon.

How are Shin splints diagnosed?

Diagnosing Shin splints can be a bit difficult because many times people misunderstand Shin split with plantar fasciitis.  Here is the list of the shin splint symptoms.

  • Your Tibia bone can be in pain
  • Lower legs swelling
  • Bumps along the Shin bones  ( chronic cases) 
  • Red patches around the painful areas ( severe cases)

Can I run if I have Shin splints?

This is a very technical question and the answer to this is yes you can run, but you should not. Many runners try to continue running with this issue and think that this pain will go away with time but actually this is absolutely wrong. They are just prolonging their injury by not giving proper time to their tissues to heal. And the worst part is your tribial stress fracture gets developed if this injury is not given proper time to heal.

But if you still want to continue running then best this to wrap your leg before you go. 

  • Use an Ace bandage or tape and wrap your leg from above the ankle to below-the-knee until the pain goes away. 
  • You can also try keeping your feet dip in warm water for some time until you feel your pain going away. Warm water will help your muscles and tissues in relaxing.
  • You can apply cold ice bags to the area of the pain especially if there is swelling or redness around the affected area.
  • You can use deep Cup covers.  These are specially made for the heels of the people suffering from Shin splints. They are cushioned with gel and provide Arch and support to the heel. Thus when you run or walk they give balance to the foot.  You can wear them with the help of socks to keep them stable.
  • You can try using some painkiller muscle relaxants while you go for running. They can also help you in the pain when you run.

How to return to running after Shin splints?

Once you are done with your Shin splints or face mild Shin pain, you can start running back.  Here are some tips that can help you in returning back to running after Shin splints.

  • Cross exercises:

You can try some other exercise for example swimming or riding a bike until you get rid of Shin splint. You can also try stretches for shin.

  • Proper shoes

Before starting your running check your current running shoes, if they are right Running shoes for shin Splints. Shoe play a vital role  for the runners with Shin if  you are using correct running shoes. For example, you may need Motion Control shoes, high arch shoes, supportive shoes, or shoes with strong ankles

If you have flat feet then you should definitely check your current shoes.

  • Increase mileage slowly

Once you start running again don’t increase mileage soon.  You can start increasing your mileage slowly for example 5 to 10 percent weekly.

  • Hard and inclined surfaces

In the start you can reintroduce the Hills and hard surfaces until Shin splints are completely vanished. Because hard surfaces and incline surfaces can be a risk for shin splints and you may not want to go through this pain again.

  • Stretches for shin

If you fee feel you can again get shin splints, or shin injury then try stretches for shin muscles. Keep stretching your Calves regularly.

Shin splints are very painful if not taken care of properly. It is suggested not to run in this scenario. But if running is necessary then precautions must be taken. For example, using deep cups, high arch shoes, muscle relaxants etc. can be helpful.