Stress Fractures: Factors, Complications, and Prevention

Stress Fractures: Factors, Complications, and Prevention

Jan 19 , 2021

Erandika Mohanathasan

Tags - Stress Fractures

The small cracks or bruises in bones are called stress fractures, which are caused by repetitive stress applied due to excessive use. But, they can also evolve from circumstances such as osteoporosis.

Usually, 1% of the general population and 5% of the athletes develop stress fracture.

Further Specifics

Stress fractures are mostly diagnosed in the lower leg, shin and foot, as the bones in that region hold the body weight.

Further, stress fracture usually occurs when you increase the magnitude of a movement too quickly.

To provide some more context, bones are designed to adapt to gradual load increase through reconditioning. So, when you try to increase the load too quickly, it may result in tissue impairment, leading to stress fracture.

In addition, initially, when you get the stress fracture, you may not even feel the pain, but it eventually gets aggravated over time.

For instance, the damaged part may start to swell or bruise around the area of the fracture. Therefore, if you get a stress fracture, refrain from doing intense activities, especially the ones adding weight to the fractured region.

Similarly, if you see any symptoms of stress fractures, consult your doctor as soon as possible and rest well.

Other Factors

Athletes, militants, people who carry heavy weights, women with irregular periods, people with weak bones or who have flat feet or high arches are more prone to get stress fractures.

Similarly, lack of Vitamin D and calcium results in low bone density, which can lead to stress fracture.

In addition, wearing shoes which do not have the capability of absorbing repetitive force or shock could lead to stress fracture.

In related conditions, if you have blisters, bunions, or tendonitis, it changes how you put weight on your foot. So, it is advisable to wear appropriate shoes


Stress fractures are not severe enough to cause acute fracture such as a broken ankle.

But, if it does not heal properly, it may lead to other chronic injuries.

Usually, it takes up to 6 to 8 weeks for the stress fracture to heal. If stress fractures do not heal properly and if you have had a stress fracture before, you are more prone to get it again. So, you have to be extra careful in such circumstances.


1. Regular Pace

Make changes in regular/slow pace.

That is, if you start exercising, increase the endurance slowly (advised to increase it by 10% every week).

And, if you are carrying weight, increase the weight load slowly.

2. Training

Cross train to avoid repetitive stressing.

3. Healthy Diet

Have a healthy diet, especially with more calcium and Vitamin D to increase bone density.

4. Proper Shoes

Wear appropriate shoes according to your feet.

For instance, make sure that the shoes fit well.

Further, footwear should decrease the stress on your foot or legs, Therefore, avoid wearing heels.

To learn more, get in touch with us today.

In the meantime, check our range of comfortable shoes.


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