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What’s Causing Your Lower Leg Pain?

The lower legs take the brunt of everyday activities from normal walking to fast running, even when lifting weights. These are then among the most common parts affected by pain, especially among people engaged in regular exercise.

Ask avid gym-goers at any American Family Fitness gym about it and you will likely get confirmation that, indeed, most of them have suffered from lower leg pain at one time or another. But you shouldn’t be if and when you know what signs to look for and what to do about them.

Muscle Cramps

These are characterized by the sudden onset of an intense feeling of tightness, numbness and pain in the lower leg, which can become worse quickly. While these are fairly common in people who exercise, these can be minimized by:

  • Drinking more water. These usually occur when your muscles are both dehydrated and tired.  
  • Performing stretching exercises before your workout sessions. These will warm up your muscles, thus, minimizing the risk of muscle cramps.
  • Massaging your legs gently where the cramps have occurred.  

Be sure to take a rest when you have leg cramps since these will worsen with activity. You can resume it once these have passed.  

Shin Splints

The painful sensations are experienced in the front of the affected calf. The cause is the inflammation of the muscles and flesh along the shin bone’s edge resulting in pain when walking, running and jumping. These can be caused by performing an activity repeated times on hard surfaces, as well as among people with their feet turned outward or with flat feet.

If you feel them, you can reduce the pain by:

  • Resting your legs as often as possible. This includes taking time off from whatever repeated physical activity you’re doing, such as running on the treadmill.
  • Placing your feet and legs in ice-cold water. This will reduce the inflammation in the legs so there’s less pain.  
  • Taking anti-inflammatory medicines, such as naproxen, ibuprofen, and aspirin, which will also decrease the pain and inflammation.
  • Wearing comfortable and supportive shoes, as well as avoiding runs on hard surfaces, if possible.
  • Performing leg stretches at regular intervals and before workouts.  

But if your pain persists, you have to seek medical opinion because there may be an underlying medical condition.  

These are just a few of the possible causes for your leg pain; others include tendinitis, sprains and strains, and broken bones, among others.  No matter the cause, you should always be aware of the possibility that your lower leg pain may be caused by your lifestyle habits, too.

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