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How to stop leg cramps at night
The following tips are able to help you avoid leg cramps while sleeping:
Consume plenty of fluids. These allow for normal muscle function and you may need to adjust how much fluid you drink based on factors as the weather and your age, activity level, and also the medication you’re taking.
Ride a stationary bike. Only few minutes of easy pedaling might help loosen up your leg muscles before you go to sleep.
Stretch your legs often .When stretching your calves and hamstrings before bed it may be able to reduce the frequency and severity of nocturnal leg cramps.
Avoid some heavy or tucked-in bedding. This kind of bedding could push your feet downward while you are asleep. Use some loose, untucked sheets, and a comforter that can allow you to keep your feet and toes upright while you are sleeping .
Change the sleeping position.You shall always avoid sleeping in positions in which your feet are pointing downward so give a try to sleeping on your back with a pillow behind your knees.
Choose supportive footwear.Some poor footwear might be able to aggravate issues with the nerves and muscles in your feet and legs, most often and especially if you have flat feet.
Treating leg and calf cramps
Although the leg cramps at night may be intensely painful, they are actually not typically serious. Most of the people who will experience them will not need medical treatment.
So try the following at home to try to relieve a cramp:
Massage your legs.Rubbing this muscle that is affected may help it relax. Use both hands so to gently knead and loosen the muscle.
Apply some heat.Warmth can soothe tight muscles. Place a hot towel, some hot water bottle, or a heating pad to the affected area. Also , taking a warm bath or shower might
In case the cramp is in your calf, then straighten your leg. Flex the foot so that it is lifted to face you and your toes are pointing towards you.
Walk on your heels.This one can actually activate the muscles opposite your calf, while allowing it to relax.
Take an over-the-counter painkiller in case your leg is sore after. The nonsteroidal and anti-inflammatory drugs as for example ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and also naproxen (Aleve) may help relieve tenderness after a cramp. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) might be able to work as well.
Drink pickle juice. The exists some evidence that suggests that drinking a small amount of pickle juice might help relieve muscle cramps.
In case often cramps are disrupting your sleep, you should make an appointment with your doctor so they might prescribe a muscle relaxant to prevent future cramps. If there is a reason that cramps are related to another medical condition, they can help manage that too.
Nocturnal leg cramp causes
Researchers do not really and exactly know what causes leg cramps during night. But there are, so known factors that may increase your risk. In a good number of cases, nocturnal leg cramps are idiopathic, which in turn means their exact cause isn’t known.
In a time during night these cramps may be related to foot position because we often tend to sleep with our feet and toes extending away from the rest of our bodies, which is a position called plantar flexion.This can shorten the calf muscles, while making them more susceptible to cramping.
There are some other factors that may contribute to nighttime leg cramps include:
Improper sitting position. If you are sitting with your legs crossed or your toes pointed for a long periods of time it shortens the calf muscles, which may in turn lead to cramping.
Sedentary life style. Your muscles may need to be stretched regularly in order to function properly so sitting for long periods of time could make leg muscles more susceptible to cramping.
Muscle overexertion. Doing a lot of exercise may create an overworked muscle and may be associated with muscle cramps.
Prolonged standing. These is some research that suggests that people who stand for long periods of time at work are more likely to experience nocturnal leg cramps.
Abnormal nerve activity. As electromyographic studies show, leg cramps are associated with some increased, and some abnormal nerve firing.
Shortening of the tendons. These, that connect muscles and bones, shorten naturally over time. And, it could lead to cramping in the muscles.
Having leg cramps at night are unlikely to be the first sign of a more serious medical condition. But, they are kind of associated with the following conditions:
musculoskeletal disorders, as for example osteoarthritis
some structural issues, such as flat feet or a spinal stenosis
some neurological disorders, as for example motor neuron disease or peripheral neuropathy
cardiovascular conditions, a heart disease or peripheral vascular disease
neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease
some medications, as statins and diuretics
kidney, liver, and thyroid conditions
metabolic disorders, as diabetes