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Overuse of Injuries


Overuse injuries can be any chronic condition that stems from repetitive motion or force through a joint that places a significant amount of stress (over time) on the joint or surrounding tissue. These injuries can affect your bone, cartilage, tendons, and muscles. Some injuries produce a constant dull, ache; while others you may feel more sharp and pinching pain, depending on the area. 

Some examples of overuse injuries are:

Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (Shin Splints)

Shin splints may lead to some sort of stress reaction/fracture in the tibia if not taken care of. This isn’t always the case, but is a possibility without ample rest and strengthening of the right muscles.

Medial/Lateral Epicondylitis

Untreated medial and lateral epicondylitis may lead to a need for a steroid injection* for temporary management due to severe pain, or debridement of degenerated tissue at the site.  *Note- steroid injections to not heal or correct the injury—just allows for decreased pain for a temporary time, though the tissue may still be damaged.

Carpal Tunnel

Carpal tunnel, if not treated conservatively early on may lead to a need for surgery to release inflamed tissue in the area.

It may be hard to perform daily activities with each of these depending on your activity level and workload. While runners may have trouble with shin splints impeding on their exercise, people who type on a computer all day may have trouble completing tasks at work. People with carpal tunnel may notice that they have to “wake and shake” their hands out upon waking up in the morning to restore normal sensation. Shin splints often present with pain while running in the anterior and medial part of their lower leg. Depending on how often you run on shin splints, there may be pain that develops while simply walking, as well as tenderness to touch.  Though each of these may seem like mild injuries, letting an injury go to long can lead to more chronic conditions with increased pain and a decrease in function. 

Each of these overuse injuries can be treated with physical therapy.  Not only will you be educated on how to accommodate your daily activities, but you will also get the tools you need to strengthen the surrounding musculature to help support and heal the area (along with the appropriate manual therapy necessary for any bound or inflamed tissue). 

Kiara Holmes, ATC


Click HERE to learn more about Injury Prevention!

If you or someone you may know is suffering from a sports injury, or has any other pain, call Loudoun Sports Therapy Center at 703-450-4300, to schedule your evaluation and let us help you overcome this debilitating condition!

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