A lot of people are complaining about leg cramps at night and many of them are wondering whether they lack a certain vitamin or if this has something to do with genetics. Provided below are a few things you need to know about nocturnal or night leg cramps. Apart from visiting a chiropractor, some effective suggestions are listed below to help you avoid this nighttime cramp ambush.
Painful and sudden leg cramps are caused by the involuntary contraction of the calf muscle, sole of the foot, toes, or the hamstring muscle. Nocturnal leg cramps or leg cramps that happen at night seem to just come out of nowhere. It can last between a couple of seconds to up to 15 minutes of excruciating pain, which men can consider as the pain experienced by women during childbirth. Depending on how severe the pain is, the affected muscle can become sore and the affected individual may experience difficulty in walking for up to two days.
A common concept that leg cramps at night only affect seniors does not take under consideration the countless numbers of athletes and pregnant women who suffer from this kind of misery. Diabetics, smokers, as well as those who are on certain drugs are likewise prone to this particular type of nighttime torment. There are 2 interrelated causes, different from medications or health conditions, are dehydration or/and electrolyte disturbance. The loss of fluids, maybe from exercise, heat, alcohol or perhaps lackadaisical liquid intake can lead to an imbalance of calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, and other mineral salts. These minerals are required for correct muscle function. Simply put, magnesium relaxes the muscles, calcium helps it contract, while potassium and sodium set the trigger.
All these are extremely interesting but provide minimal help during your midnight ordeal. Current medical recommendations suggest that you should follow your urge to fight. Let us take calf spasm, for example, pointing your foot and toes upward toward your knee, or even grabbing and holding them up until you feel your muscle start to loosen up, can effectively break the cramp and decrease the possibility of soreness the following day.
Avoiding leg cramps once and for all is a much better plan, although quite difficult to achieve. The conventional drug of choice, is quinine, which is a muscle relaxant, is no longer preferred because of its inefficiency, even with its several years of anecdotal evidence. The FDA has also banned its use in OTC or over the counter medications because of its side effects and issues concerning miscarriages and birth defects. However, quinine can still be used in small amounts for tonic water flavoring. Your doctor won’t be impressed if you try to self treat your leg cramps by mixing quinine with gin and tonic before you sleep in an effort to avoid nocturnal leg cramps.
There is a non alcoholic method if you are prone to nocturnal leg cramps. It involves proper diet, hydration, and brief stretching. The most crucial part of the tree is to make sure that you have enough liquids during the day. You can also maintain the correct electrolyte balance needed for undisturbed sleep by eating vegetables and fruits including bananas, potatoes, tomatoes, and drinking orange juice. You should also consider visiting a North Myrtle Beach chiropractor to help you with this problem.
Before going to sleep, you should also exhaust the stretch reflex of your muscle through a simple and quick exercise could also reduce the severity as well as the frequency of your leg cramps. For calves and the feet, stand without your shoes and your toes on a block or stair and steady yourself with the wall or the banister. Lower and then raise your heels so you can stretch your foot muscles and your calf. Hold it each extreme position for a few seconds. Apart from that, loosening the blankets and sheets at the foot of your bed can help in keeping your toes from pointing throughout the night, which is another factor that’s said to encourage leg cramps. In terms of genetics, there is still no evidence linking leg cramps to heredity.
Call Divine Life Health Center if you want to know how chiropractic care can help you with your problems with nocturnal leg cramps.
Divine Life Health Center
2200 Premier Resort Blvd Unit C
North Myrtle Beach, SC 29582