Health Tip: Help Prevent a Stress Fracture

Jan. 20, 2010 -- (HealthDay News) -- A stress fracture occurs from overuse, when muscles become too weak to absorb the continued stress of physical activity, causing a small crack in a bone.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons offers these suggestions to help prevent a stress fracture:

  • When embarking on a new sport or exercise plan, be sure to increase your activity gradually, not all at once.
  • Try cross training and varying your exercise routine, rather than doing the same exercises each day.
  • Eat healthy foods, especially those rich in calcium and vitamin D.
  • Invest in good equipment, such as new running shoes with plenty of support.
  • If you start to have any swelling or pain, give yourself a break with a few days of rest. If pain persists, see a doctor.