Muscle spasm, also known as muscle cramps, can happen to any of us. We are all candidates for it so we must be careful. Calf muscle spasms are very painful. It is the involuntary contraction of your muscles in the calf due to many reasons. We must know this reason so that we can prevent ourselves from experiencing a very excruciating pain from muscle cramps.
To be clear, muscle cramps can affect any muscle or muscle group. But most of the time, muscles in the thigh, feet and calf are affected. Muscle cramp in the calf is also called “Charley horse”. To prevent yourself from experiencing muscle cramps, you can take note of these safety precautions:
Always stretch before any activities. Whether it is participating in a new sport or exercise, always stretch. Stretching your muscles helps a lot because they prepare your muscle for stress. Sudden application of stress to your muscles causes fatigue and it may result to cramps.
Take it easy with new activities. If you have been practicing a sedentary lifestyle and you decide to participate in a new sport, remind yourself to take it easy. We get it, you are excited. But this sudden stress applied to your muscles makes your muscles tired. If the activity is prolonged, you might experience the cramps while you are still doing the activity. Make the change gradual to prevent calf cramps.
Drink lots of water. Keeping yourself hydrated at all times is the key to preventing dehydration-induced calf muscle cramps.
Check your electrolytes. Your electrolytes send the messages to your muscle. If they are not at a normal level, they may not function properly. Because they are your messenger to your muscles, your muscles might not function at it’s full potential too. This can also be a risk factor for muscle cramps.
Eat healthy! Eating leafy vegetable, fruits, fish, dairy products, eggs, peanuts, and grains provide calcium, magnesium and potassium. These minerals, when lacking in our body can also cause muscle cramps.
If you are already experiencing the pain, then try these tips to alleviate the signs and symptoms.
If you feel that you are about to have cramps, stop what your doing. Proceeding with the activity will only intensify the pain. Sit down and relax. The pain will eventually go away after a few minutes. After that, minimize the activity that you will do.
Massage. Massage the affected area. Massaging it will increase the blood flow to the muscle that is having cramps.
Apply hot and/or cold packs. The hot packs will increase the blood flow to the affected area while the cold packs will alleviate the pain from the muscle cramps.
Another area where many people can find relief is limiting or stopping the drinking of caffeinated drinks. A stimulant such as caffeine may be a cause of the signals sent by the brain through the nervous system to the legs that cause the creepy-crawly sensations that are a sign of RLS. It has been found that stopping the consumption of caffeine can have a positive effect when treating RLS.
Because it is believed that RLS may also be caused by vitamin and mineral deficiencies taking vitamin and mineral supplements may be encouraged. For people with restless leg syndrome iron, along with a B12 or folate supplement, is an important part of any treatment regimen. Increasing iron in many cases can decrease or eliminate the symptoms all together.
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Drug Therapy – Prescription drugs are used only for those who suffer the more severe symptoms of RLS and are used to treat the symptoms only; there is no known cure for this disease. There are four classes of drugs that are used to treat restless leg syndrome.
A good way to prevent leg cramps is to maintain the muscles relaxed avoiding spasms. As a result you will be able to sleep comfortably and wake up totally energized. Now you can achieve this by using an orthopedic pillow like the Leg Wedge Pillow- This affordable dual purpose, contour leg spacer knee wedge and leg elevation pillow is designed to fit the natural curves of your body and legs, cradling you in comfort.
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