• Should I use HEAT or ICE?

    ICE should be used when there is apparent swelling or bruising of an injured area
    ICE reduces blood flow to the area, ultimately reducing inflammation
    ICE should be applied in 20 minute intervals for optimal resultsIcing with an Ice Pack 

    HEAT should be used when there is recurring pain in a previously injured area
    HEAT encourages blood flow and Oxygen transport to relax muscles or joints in pain
    HEAT should be applied for no more than 20 minutes no less than 4 days after an injury for optimal recovery 

     C. Godsey. When to Use Hot and Cold Therapy. URMC Health Encyclopedia. 2015. 30 April 2015.

    Shin Splints vs Stress Fractures
    SHIN SPLINT is a swelling of the tissue along the tibia
    Shin splints develop when the tissues and muscles of the lower leg tear as a result of the repeated pounding of running
    This may occur when an athlete attempts to run a long distance too quickly 
    ex: An athlete runs 5 miles, after not running for a while, without attempting to first prepare themselves with shorter distances 
    SHIN SPLINTS may also develop as a result of having tight calf muscles or through the repeated use of improper footwear
    Pain upon running a finger down the length of the shin bone is an indicator of shin splints
    Stretching before and after running, maintaining proper form while running, wearing appropriate footwear, and icing post-run will help to prevent and reduce the risk of shin splints occurring
    If shin pain persists for longer than one week, see your Athletic Trainer or health care professional for further help
    A STRESS FRACTURE is an overuse injury that occurs as a single crack or group of cracks in a bone
    A stress fracture can be identified by pain in a small and specific region that is noticeable when walking, sitting, or even when trying to sleep at night
     Stress fractures are more rare than shin splints, and resting the injured area is the only way to allow proper recovery and prevent a full fracture

    Types of Ankle Sprains 
    COMMON ankle sprains occur when a ligament on the outside of the ankle (the ATFL) is injured, typically when an athlete rolls (inverts) their ankle
     COMMON ankle sprains result in pain, inflammation, and possible bruising right below the outside ankle joint
     Proper utilization of ice therapy, therapeutic exercise, and taping or bracing may allow an athlete to return to activity quickly after enduring this type of sprain
    HIGH ankle sprains are the more severe type of ankle sprain that involve the syndesmosis ligaments of the ankle
    These ligaments are responsible for absorbing the forces that the lower leg is exposed to when walking or running, so when they are injured, normal activity can be extremely painful 
    Pain is felt from the ankle up to the leg 
    The recovery period for a high ankle sprain could be anywhere between 2-6 weeks depending on the degree and severity
    The RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) method is encouraged for the recovery of both types of ankle sprains 
    If you suspect you have any type of sprain, see your Athletic Trainer or health care professional for evaluation  
Last Modified on May 5, 2015