Have you ever seen a split in a log or tree while hiking? How about a crack in your favorite water bottle before taking a swig? A stress fracture of the bone isn't much different. Stress fractures are small cracks in the bone that will develop from overuse. If you've noticed localized redness, swelling, and tenderness when you push on your bone, take a break.
The reason you may have developed a break in your bone could be on account of predisposed conditions like a low bone remodeling rate, an extreme body type, or skeletal misalignment. Due to nutritional deficiencies and the possibility of low estrogen levels, women are most susceptible. Other factors include: differences in leg lengths, muscle strength, and flexibility imbalances, as well as excessive or repetitive exercise.
Before going on a hike, be sure to have proper footwear and make yourself aware of the mileage you’re putting on your feet. If a stress fracture goes untreated, you run the risk a full on break. A break will prevent you from being active for quite some time and will require surgical treatment, while most fractures can be managed conservatively.
Prevention is key. If you foot or leg becomes sore, reduce the amount of exercise you do. Just take a shorter hike, or better yet, take the day off! If you suspect a stress fracture, contact Dr. Victoria Melhuish and schedule an appointment. For additional information about how Sierra Foot and Ankle in Gardnerville, NV can help, call (775) 783-8037 or visit our website.