Stop Running from the Pain: Common Running Injuries and How to Treat them

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Running season is in full swing in Arizona, which also means running injuries are on a rise. There are many common running injuries. Some of which include Achilles tendonitis, forefoot pain from stress fractures, and inflamed nerves called neuromas.stide

Achilles Tendonitis is usually painful where your Achilles tendon attaches to the heel bone. This usually occurs when people increase the level of intensity of their workouts. It is an injury caused by overuse. The pain felt is usually an achy pain that gets worse after running or climbing.
Treatment: This includes stretching your calf muscle, icing the painful area, and taking oral anti-inflammatories. Wearing a boot that prevents you from moving your ankle will help the inflammation go down, as well as wearing a night splint that keeps your foot at a 90° angle. An orthotic can help reduce the abnormal stresses that caused the injury.
If the pain is getting worse, make sure to come in and see your podiatrist. Pain in this area can mean a tear in your tendon, which you should have treated by a doctor.

Stress Fractures these are small cracks in the bone that are usually caused by overuse injury. They are most common in the metatarsal bones, the bones in the forefoot. This is another type of injury that is caused by an increased amount of workout intensity. The bones aren’t able to heal the repetitive trauma as quickly as it is happening. The pain is usually in a specific spot, and it gets better with rest. It is common to have swelling associated in the area of pain. Running without arch-supports can be a risk factor to developing stress fractures, and people with osteoporosis can get stress fractures more easily. It is important to know that stress fractures do not always show up on x-ray because of their small size.
Treatment: It is important to rest your injury. Continued activity can cause the fracture to get worse. Ice can help the swelling decrease. Your podiatrist might suggest using a walking boot to immobilize the area, which would give the break a chance to heal.

Neuromas are inflamed nerves that most commonly occur in between the third and fourth toes. They can occur in between the other toes as well. These can be very painful and often described as feeling as if you are walking on a pebble. You might experience a burning sensation in the area, or tingling to your toes. These are cause by irritation in the area. Shoes being too tight, or too much motion in the area while running can cause this.
Treatment: Arch supports or pads inside your shoe can help take pressure off of the nerve. If the pain has become bad you can see our doctors for a steroid shot that will decrease inflammation.

It is always important to be aware of your pain and address it. Running through the pain can make injuries worse. Easing into a running schedule is the best way to prevent acute injuries.

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