Running, like other forms of exercise, can have a positive impact on your health. However, repetitive foot and leg strain may eventually lead to an increased risk of injury. That’s why Foot and Ankle Specialists of Central PA offers effective running injuries treatment and prevention methods in Mechanicsburg, PA, so you can get back in the gym or on the track fast.
Common Running Injuries
Running injuries range from mild to severe, causing pain that varies from brief and annoying to chronic and intensely uncomfortable. At our practice, we commonly see the following running injuries:
- Pulled hamstrings: This injury involves the excessive stretching or tearing of your hamstrings, muscles located at the back of each thigh, and results in mild to severe discomfort.
- Hip stress fractures: Often the consequence of hip overuse, a hip stress fracture occurs when the ball in our ball-and-socket hip joints becomes injured. They are most commonly seen in long-distance runners.
- Shin splints: This common running injury is the result of overusing the shinbone, the large front bone in the lower leg. Runners who have recently intensified their workouts are especially prone to shin splints.
- Achilles tendinitis: This overuse injury affects the Achilles tendon, which connects our calf muscles to our heel bones. If left untreated, this painful condition can increase a runner’s risk of an Achilles tendon rupture.
- Plantar fasciitis: One of the most common causes of heel pain, this condition refers to inflammation of the plantar fascia or the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot.
- Arch pain: Also commonly called a strain, arch pain typically causes inflammation and a burning sensation beneath the arch of the foot. It can result from overuse, unsupportive shoes, or another injury.
How Are Running Injuries Treated? Each type of running injury requires different treatment. Thanks to the extensive experience of our physician-surgeons, our team can provide an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment options to ensure your satisfaction with the care you receive.
Conservative treatments are often the best solution for mild running injuries. Elevating the affected area, applying a hot and/or cold compress, using NSAID pain relievers if medically appropriate, and careful stretching can all provide relief.
When pain and inflammation are more pronounced, MLS laser therapy may be recommended. This treatment uses infrared light to reduce inflammation and alleviate pain in the feet and ankles. For patients who present foot, heel, or Achilles tendon pain, extracorporeal pulse activation technology (EPAT) also proves effective. EPAT enhances blood flow with pressure waves to speed healing and relieve discomfort.
Our team can also perform surgery to address more severe injuries, such as chronic arch pain or serious hip stress fractures. No matter which methods are best suited to your running injuries, we offer the latest technology and advancements in foot and ankle care to ensure you feel confident in the treatment you receive.
Running Injury Prevention
Taking simple precautions when running is the best way to make the most of your workout and protect your feet and ankles. We advise runners to:
- Consult with a doctor before starting a new regimen
- Stretch properly before and after running
- Wear appropriate, supportive footwear
- Get fitted for 4D custom orthotics for optimal foot protection
- Always stop and rest as needed
Learn More about Treatment for Running Injuries
All runners benefit from quality foot and ankle care. To learn more about protecting your body and enjoying an active lifestyle, contact Foot and Ankle Specialists of Central PA today. Our office is located at 4 Flowers Dr, Ste 2 in Mechanicsburg, PA, and you can schedule an appointment online or by calling 717-620-8225 to speak with a member of our team.