How to treat shin splints ?

pops1a

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I've been told by the guy in my gym that I've got shin splints. The inner sides of my shins feel sore to touch and when I run the muscles feel tight. After I stop running they become even tighter, painful, throb and feel as tough they're going to tear. I've reduced my running for a week now but the tightness of muscles and pain is still their. Any suggestions dealing with the problem very welcome and can anyone confirm it's shin splints or not.
 

pops1a

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Thanks for that EVASTAR, interesting read on the issue of shin splints, it's a lot more complicated than meets the eye. I've been to see a physio a couple of weeks back and she's given me 2 exercises to perform, which I did in the first week. I've been on holiday for a week and not been training so the pain has eased somewhat. I'm slowly getting back into my routine and will see what happens once I get into full swing of things. I am wondering though, what the underlying cause could be. I do have a lot of pain and tenderness in my left ankle especially after exercise and in the morning. I also have worn cartilage in the left knee, which has also caused a bakers cyst and problems with my left hip and lower back. I think it could all be related but the physio is treating them as separate issues. I've been doing the exercises she has given me but I haven't seen any progress yet. She also told me to use a bandage to use to move over the top knee joint to stop it from rubbing while exercising, but I don't think it's helping. I'll continue to see the physio and see what she does next.
 

Evastar

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Are you taking any kind of supplements e.g. fish oils or omega 3 & 6 and glucosamine for your joints, and calcium and Vitamin D for your circulation?

They probably are related, as if you have pain and discomfort in one area it is going to affect your posture etc and put extra pressure on the other joints. You are seeing the doctor for your baker's cyst aren't you, what has he/she said about the rest?
 

pops1a

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I'm not taking any supplements and I can't take glucosamine as I'm allergic to shellfish. I do eat fish regularly and have linseed 3 to 4 times a week for my omega 3 and 6. I bought some black cherry concentrate juice the other day as someone recommended it for joint pain although I haven't started using it yet because I'm not sure best way to use it, I'll ask the person when I see him. I'm not sure if I have any deficiencies in calcium or vitamin D and I think my circulation is fine as I exercise regularly so that should take care of that I hope. Do you have any further thoughts on this. I had an MRI scan on my left knee which showed the cyst as well as worn cartilage. The doctor referred me to a physio who said the cyst was a secondary issue and is as a result of worn cartilage. I'm currently seeing another physio, but I'm not sure exactly what she is planning to do, she just taped the top joint across to stop it rubbing. I'm going to see the physio tomorrow to get more info as to the long term treatment. I'm not confident though, the way the NHS is running these days I don't have much hope of getting the treatment I need.
 

Evastar

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Sorry to hear you don't feel you will get the treatment you need from the NHS. To be honest, without seeing you it is very hard for me to say anything further, and i really feel you need to follow your doctor's and physio's advice on this one, as not only are they seeing you in person but their qualifications are superior to mine.

The internet is fine for giving a broad generalisation on things, but only actually dealing with someone in person can give a proper diagnosis and treatment for an individual case.

Best of luck with your physio, and let us know how you get on :)
 

pops1a

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Thanks evastar, I think I'm going to need all the luck I can get. I saw the physio and explained to her their was no improvement, she told me to continue with the exercises and gave me some more. When I asked about the baker's cyst, she said their wasn't much she could do and all that could be done was to have it cut out. I was quite frustrated with her response and felt as though she wasn't really interested or knew what options were available because as far as I know that is the last resort. I don't want to undermine her ability but I think she must have recently got qualified and she seems to be overwhelmed by the demands of the job. I also explained to her that the bandaging to move the top knee joint across was not working as the bandages came off as soon as I began to exercise. All she could say was, their is nothing else, I know that can't be right as I see footballers being bandaged up every week playing and they don't have any problems. She did say the MRI scan on my knee showed some signs of arthritis, this seems to mean their is nothing that can be done or more like they want to do. I'm going to continue with the advice and exercises and see what happens, as I don't really know what else i can do at the moment. Sorry if it sounds like I'm Moaning but I feel as though their must be something better than what I'm getting now. OK the moaning is over for now that I've got it off my chest.
 

Evastar

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I didn't mean to imply that you were moaning, i just wanted to point out to you that your physio and doctor were well qualified and also had the advantage of seeing you in person.

Unfortunately not all physio's have the same level of interest in their jobs and their clients, is it possible for you to ask to be transferred to another one if you aren't happy with this one?

Arthritis is wear in the joint, i assume it's osteoarthritis she is referring to and not rheumatoid arthritis?

If it's osteoarthritis, has the physio suggested heat treatments? And how would heat treatments affect your baker's cyst? There are a number of types of heat you can try, from getting an infra red lamp, to deep heat cream to hot compresses, or blends of essential oils. A combination of supplements and heat should help to ease the joint.
 

pops1a

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sorry EVASTAR for the misunderstanding, I didn't mean to imply that you thought I was moaning, it was more me thinking I was, as I was writing the reply yesterday and reading it. I can't remember which arthritis she mentioned, but she hasn't discussed any other treatments, should the exercises don't work. I did ask her however if there were any supplements I could take to help, but she didn't recommend any. When I enquired whether glucosamine would help, she wouldn't endorse them, although she admitted to taking them herself. I may just mention the treatments you're referring to when I see her in 2 weeks time. I do use essential oils, which I mix myself, for sore muscles especially before exercise. What oil mix mix would you recommend?
 

Evastar

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It depends on whether you have sensitive skin or not. You shouldn't use the same mix all the time either, you should alternate so you don't build up a sensitivity to any particular oils.

To warm up your muscles i would recommend black pepper, ginger, peppermint, rosemary or juniper. Chamomile, lavender and marjoram are analgesic (pain relieving), so maybe a blend of black pepper, lavender and rosemary, or whichever mix you like, varying it so you aren't using the same oils constantly. If any of the oils cause a reaction, wash it off and stop using that particular essential oil.

I assume it's osteoarthritis, which is wear at the joint, rather than rheumatoid arthritis, which would be an autoimmune disorder and results in heat and swelling at the area. Rheumatoid Arthritis Causes, Symptoms, Signs, Diagnosis and Treatment by MedicineNet.com. It appears that Baker's cysts are a complication of osteoarthritis Baker Cyst Causes, Diagnosis, Symptoms and Treatment on MedicineNet.com

If it's osteoarthritis massage with essential oils can help to warm up the knee and also relieve pain. You could also try a compress with the oils. The oils i would recommend for this are:

analgesic oils benzoin, chamomile, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, ginger, lavender, marjoram, peppermint, rosemary

detoxifying oils black pepper, cypress, fennel, ginger, grapefruit, juniper, lemon, rosemary, sage, thyme

oils to improve circulation benzoin, black pepper, eucalyptus, garlic, geranium, ginger, lemon, mandarin, marjoram, rosemary, sage, thyme

So for a warming and analgesic blend for example, i would mix 1 drop benzoin, 2 drops black pepper, 1 drop of ginger and 2 drops of marjoram in 20 ml of a carrier oil e.g. grapeseed or almond oil or wheatgerm. This blend could be used before exercise and also to relieve pain and warm up the joint to help with the arthritis.

Your physio won't recommend any supplements because even though she will probably have learnt about them in college she will have been told that she isn't qualified or insured to recommend them. I suggest you ask your local pharmacist what might help you.
 
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pops1a

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Thanks EVASTAR. I'll try those oil mixes as I've not been alternating them. What is the maximum number of oils that should be mixed. I've not tried black pepper before it sounds intriguing. I think their is a chilli oil that's used in ayurvedic medicine, but I've not tried it yet. Which oils should be in the mix every time out of the different categories and which ones can be alternated?
 

Evastar

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Three, maybe four oils maximum in a blend. Black pepper, peppermint and ginger are very strong oils and should be used sparingly, any more than two drops in a blend can cause a skin reaction, never ever try to use these oils neat.

I would maybe use black pepper and ginger for a week or so, and then stop using them and use peppermint or rosemary, make up two different blends and use one for a week and then the other one as the blends should keep in a dark glass bottle for six months, as long as it is kept tightly closed and kept out of direct sunlight.

So maybe make up the blend i mentioned earlier and another one of peppermint, rosemary and lavender and use one for a week and then switch over, see how that goes?

The oils i have mentioned shouldn't be too expensive, it's ones like rose, melissa and neroli and german chamomile that cost a lot.
 

pops1a

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Three, maybe four oils maximum in a blend. Black pepper, peppermint and ginger are very strong oils and should be used sparingly, any more than two drops in a blend can cause a skin reaction, never ever try to use these oils neat.

I would maybe use black pepper and ginger for a week or so, and then stop using them and use peppermint or rosemary, make up two different blends and use one for a week and then the other one as the blends should keep in a dark glass bottle for six months, as long as it is kept tightly closed and kept out of direct sunlight.

So maybe make up the blend i mentioned earlier and another one of peppermint, rosemary and lavender and use one for a week and then switch over, see how that goes?

The oils i have mentioned shouldn't be too expensive, it's ones like rose, melissa and neroli and german chamomile that cost a lot.

Thanks EVASTAR, I'll give those a go. I've already got 500 ml mix and used 50 drops of each oil. I will make one from your suggestion and alternate them and see how I get on.
 

Evastar

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Ok, well if its your first time using black pepper and ginger maybe just make up a small tester bottle first to see how you react to them.
 
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