What causes Charley horses in horses feet?
- There are many causes of foot and leg muscle strain that lead to cramps and Charley Horses. They include: Dehydration: Not drinking enough water throughout the day can lead to intense foot and leg muscle cramps, so be sure to stay adequately hydrated with plenty of healthy fluids.
What causes a charley horse in your foot?
Overuse of a muscle, dehydration, muscle strain or simply holding a position for a prolonged period can cause a muscle cramp. In many cases, however, the cause isn’t known. Although most muscle cramps are harmless, some may be related to an underlying medical condition, such as: Inadequate blood supply.
What are the main causes of charley horses?
Charley Horse Causes
- Poor blood flow.
- Working your muscles too much.
- Not stretching enough.
- Being active in high temperatures.
- A lack of magnesium and/or potassium in your diet.
- A problem such as a spinal cord injury or a pinched nerve in your neck or back.
- Kidney disease.
What deficiency causes a charley horse?
A mineral deficiency or an imbalance of electrolytes such as magnesium, potassium, calcium, and sodium is also likely to increase one’s odds of getting a charley horse. Electrolytes are certain minerals that play an important role in muscle function.
What causes Charlie horses in hands and feet?
Spasms, or cramps, are involuntary contractions in the hands or feet. The most common sources of spasms include overused muscles and dehydration. Prolonged writing or typing can lead to hand cramping from overuse of the muscles. Other reasons for cramping are low levels of calcium and magnesium.
How do you get rid of a charlie horse in your foot?
Foot Cramp Treatment
- If you’re sitting or lying down, stand up and put weight on your cramping foot.
- Actively lift your foot and toes, pulling them up toward your nose.
- Rub your muscle gently as you stretch it.
- If ice is not working, put heat on the cramped muscle with a warm towel or heating pad.
How do you stop a foot cramp?
Stretch your foot gently, but forcefully to relieve the cramp by flexing your foot and pressing down on your big toe. Walking around and jiggling your leg may also help with both foot and leg cramps. Taking a warm bath or shower, or using ice may ease any lingering pain. Deep tissue massage may help in the long term.
What’s the difference between a Charlie horse and a cramp?
A sustained muscle spasm is called a muscle cramp. Leg muscles, especially the quadriceps (thigh), hamstrings (back of thigh), and gastrocnemius (calves), are most likely to cramp, but any skeletal muscle in the body can cramp. A “charley horse” is another name for a muscle cramp.
Do bananas help charley horses?
You probably know that bananas are a good source of potassium. But they’ll also give you magnesium and calcium. That’s three out of four nutrients you need to ease muscle cramps tucked under that yellow peel. No wonder bananas are a popular, quick choice for cramp relief.
What causes cramp in your feet and toes?
If you often feel cramping in your toes and feet, you likely want to know why. Common reasons include not drinking enough water, not getting enough exercise, and wearing shoes that are just not a good fit. Certain medical conditions, or drugs prescribed to treat them, may contribute to the problem as well.
What foods trigger leg cramps?
WHAT FOODS CAN CAUSE MUSCLE CRAMPS?
- Refined carbs like white bread are devoid of nutrients.
- Excessive red meat consumption is bad due to nitrates.
- Fast food is full of trans fats.
- Foods with refined sugar such as packaged muffins are full of artificial ingredients.
- Salty foods can wreak havoc on the body.
Can low vitamin D cause charley horses?
Even though it is well established that vitamin D plays a role in maintaining blood levels of calcium and phosphate, there is not enough evidence to suggest that vitamin D deficiency causes leg cramps or that vitamin D deficiency correction will eliminate them.
What vitamin helps with charley horses?
Additionally, certain vitamins and minerals impact muscle function, particularly potassium and magnesium. A significant body of research has found that increasing your magnesium intake can help with the frequency of night time leg cramps, especially for pregnant women.
What vitamin is good for hand cramps?
Magnesium helps to maintain strong bones and relax muscles. This mineral can aid in preventing muscle cramps, including hand cramps, as well as restless leg syndrome and eye twitches. If you’re low on magnesium, you may also experience some of the following symptoms: fatigue.
What is dystonia of the feet?
Curled, clenched toes or a painful cramped foot are telltale signs of dystonia. Dystonia is a sustained or repetitive muscle twisting, spasm or cramp that can occur at different times of day and in different stages of Parkinson’s disease (PD).
How do you get rid of hand cramps fast?
A warm compress or warm water may relax the hand’s muscles and make stretching and massage easier. Extending and stretching the fingers and gently massaging the cramped spot may help the discomfort go away. Small stress or hand exerciser balls relax hand muscles and relieve cramps.
Charley horse: Causes, symptoms, remedies, and more
A charley horse is a muscular spasm that occurs suddenly and is extremely painful. It is more common after physical activity and at night. A calf muscle strain is most usually associated with lower leg pain, although it can also manifest itself in the foot and, on rare occasions, the thigh. These muscular spasms may also be experienced by pregnant women and persons suffering from certain medical disorders. Leg cramps afflict around a third of the population over the age of 50. According to a paper published in 2021, experts are unsure about the actual cause of muscular cramping.
Muscle cramps can be caused by a variety of factors, including the following:
- Nocturnal leg cramps may be caused by vigorous daily exercise, electrolyte imbalances, or the use of certain drugs
- Nevertheless, there is no definitive cause for them. Muscle cramps during pregnancy can be caused by a variety of factors, including weight growth, blood flow disturbance, and peripheral nerve compression. Cramping can occur during or after exercise due to a variety of factors including neurological changes, dehydration, and electrolyte imbalances, particularly in the arms and legs.
Crampings, particularly those that afflict the leg, are referred to as “charley horses.” Despite the fact that some individuals use the term “charley horse” to describe muscular spasms or twitches, these are two very distinct events. In general, clinicians understand the need of distinguishing between cramps and other disorders that appear to be the same as cramps, such as the following:
- Dystonia is a movement condition characterized by involuntary movements
- Myotonia is the process of muscles tensing, which includes both voluntarily flexing and involuntarily contracting
- And dystonia is a movement disorder characterized by involuntary movements. Tetany, which is an electrolyte imbalance caused by low calcium levels
- Myalgia, which is muscular soreness
Scientists have determined that a charley horse arises when muscles abruptly spasm or constrict, resulting in pain and discomfort. The ailment most commonly affects the calf muscle, which is located towards the rear of the lower leg. The abrupt and uncontrolled spasm is usually short, but it can linger for up to ten minutes in certain cases. The majority of people have unpleasant muscular contractions that do not result in long-term difficulties. Others, on the other hand, may have excruciating agony and suffering that lasts for several days.
Painful leg cramps, for example, might make it more difficult to move about and get around.
Additionally, the timing of a cramp might have an impact on its significance.
According to an analysis published in 2021, there are various risk factors for leg cramps:
- Being above the age of 60: A total of 37 percent of Americans over the age of 60 suffer from nocturnal leg cramps
- Being pregnant entails a number of changes. Cramping of the muscles occurs in around 50% of pregnant women, especially at night. If you have chronic renal failure, you may have the following symptoms: People suffering from chronic renal failure account for around 50% of the population. Muscle cramps, particularly in the legs, are experienced
- Having amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) means you have the following symptoms: Muscle cramps are common in people with ALS, with a 95 percent risk of having them. Having diabetes is a medical condition. Muscle cramps are experienced by around 60% of persons with type 1 diabetes. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is around 80% in the general population.
Acute calf discomfort can occur for a variety of reasons that are unrelated to cramping. These are some examples:
- Trauma, deep vein thrombosis, a burst Baker’s cyst, to name a few conditions.
Following a review of publications published in 2017, researchers discovered that the following categories of sickness are frequently associated with leg cramps:
- A number of diseases and treatments are available for cardiovascular diseases, including coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, and uremia
- Neurological conditions such as motor neuron disease and polio
- And musculoskeletal problems such as arthritis. Metabolic conditions such as type 2 diabetes, liver disease, and thyroid dysfunction are also available.
Drugs and muscle cramps
Leg cramps are a common side effect of several medications. Staminoids, which assist decrease cholesterol levels, and diuretics, which help lower blood pressure levels, are examples of such medications. Some stimulants, such as amphetamines and caffeine, may also cause a charley horse or a leg cramp if taken in large quantities. Anyone who experiences leg cramps after taking prescription medications should consult with a doctor or pharmacist, who can provide advice on whether or not the medicine should be changed.
When the frequency or severity of muscular cramping increases, it is important to see a doctor since it might indicate an underlying condition that needs to be addressed.
When a person seeks medical attention for a charley horse condition, the doctor may inquire about their symptoms, which may include:
- It is important to know what the cramping feels like and where it occurs
- When and how often the cramps occur
- How severe the cramps are
- Whether they have started recently
- The person’s exercise habits
- Whether the person has any other symptoms, medical problems, or is taking any medications
- And whether the person is pregnant.
According to the 2021 study, a doctor may also instruct the patient to conduct stretches around the area afflicted by cramps or to move muscles in the surrounding area. This information can assist the doctor in determining the likely reason. In accordance with current research, quinine appears to be the only medicine that can help lower the intensity and frequency of leg cramps. Doctors, on the other hand, are reluctant to suggest this medication since its usefulness is questionable, despite the possibility of major adverse effects.
- Standing or moving the leg or foot will help to gently stretch out the muscle. Pulling the toes and the foot up and to the front of the leg should be firm but not harsh. Continue to perform these exercises until the cramping subsides and disappears.
A massage of the tight muscle has been shown to be effective by some persons. Depending on whether there are evidence of an underlying disease that may be causing the cramping, a doctor may recommend more tests. If a person is taking a medication that increases the likelihood of cramping, a doctor may decide to modify the medication or the dosage. A person may want to attempt the following methods to avoid getting a charley horse or a muscular cramp:
- Leaving enough time between eating and exercising
- Warming up before and after exercise by gently stretching muscles
- Drinking fluids and eating a small amount of food after exercise to replace fluid and minerals lost during exercise
- Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water at all times
- Avoiding caffeine and other stimulants Keeping an eye out for any potential adverse effects of prescription medicines
A number of individuals take magnesium supplements to try to ease muscle cramps. However, evidence shows that magnesium supplements are ineffective in alleviating either pregnancy-related leg cramps or nocturnal leg cramps in women. Changes that may be beneficial, despite the lack of scientific evidence to support them, include the following:
- The use of relaxation techniques such as massage and heat treatment, as well as the use of alternative footwear, are all recommended. for people who lead a physically inactive existence, physical activity
Relaxation, massage, and heat treatment; switching to a new pair of shoes; keeping a healthy weight; and physical activity for people who have a sedentary lifestyle
Charley Horse: Causes, Risks, and Treatments
We feature goods that we believe will be of interest to our readers. If you make a purchase after clicking on one of the links on this page, we may receive a small commission.how Here’s it works:What is a charley horse? Amuscle spasm is referred to as “charley horse” in some circles. Charlie horses may affect any muscle, although they are most commonly found in the legs and thighs. If the contracting muscles do not relax for many seconds or more, the pain can be extremely excruciating. If the contracting muscles do not release for several seconds or more, the pain can become severe.
- Charley horses are often curable at home, especially if they occur infrequently.
- In most cases, however, repeated muscular spasms are associated with underlying health concerns that necessitate medical intervention.
- You may also take steps to improve your comfort by implementing treatments and preventive measures.
- The following are the most typical causes:
- Exercising in extreme heat or cold, overusing a specific muscle during exercise, and tension (which is most commonly felt in the neck muscles) are all possible causes of muscle injuries. not warming up before a workout session
- Using diuretics, which can cause low potassium levels
- Mineral depletion, or having too little calcium, potassium, and sodium in the blood
- Nerve compression in the spine
Numerous people report having charley horses during their sleeping hours and being roused as a result of them. Muscle spasms that create charley horses as you sleep are a typical occurrence in the population. However, the exact reason for the occurrence of these evening spams is still a mystery. It is considered that laying in an uncomfortable position in bed for an extended period of time contributes to this condition.
Muscle spasms can occur at any age and in any situation. As well as occurring at any time of day or night, a charley horse can occur at any location. There is a higher likelihood of having a Charley horse if you belong to one of the following groups:
- Athletes, newborns, elderly persons, those who are obese, people who are taking certain medications such as diuretics, raloxifene (Evista), orstatin treatments, and people who smoke are just a few examples of who should avoid smoking.
Because of poor circulation in their legs, people who are fat are more prone to develop charley horses than other people. Athletesoften suffers from charley horses as a result of muscular exhaustion or excessive usage. The occurrence of the odd charley horse does not necessitate a formal medical diagnosis. Your doctor, on the other hand, should look into the frequency and recurrence of muscular spasms. This would apply if a charley horse appeared more than once a week without a satisfactory explanation for the occurrences.
- In order to determine whether nerve compression is the source of repeated charley horses, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans may be performed.
- It may also be necessary to do laboratory tests to rule out the presence of low potassium, calcium, or magnesium levels.
- The therapy for charley horses is determined on the underlying cause of the problem.
- Heating pads can assist to speed up the process of relaxing, while an ice pack can aid to dull the discomfort.
- A more forceful approach is required for recurrent charley horses.
- In extreme circumstances, your doctor may prescribe an antispasmodic medicine to alleviate the symptoms.
- In extreme circumstances, your doctor may recommend that you have surgery performed.
- If your spasms are caused by nerve compression, this may be of assistance.
- In order to ease the discomfort associated with a charley horse, you can apply pressure to the region of the cramp with your hands during the procedure.
- If you have a charley horse in your leg, you can try the following stretches to see if they help to alleviate the discomfort:
- Standing up and lunging forward on the front leg of the leg that is not experiencing muscular cramping
- Straightening the back of the leg that is experiencing the cramp and lunging forward on the rear leg of the leg that is experiencing the cramp
For a few seconds, you can also stand on the tips of your toes in order to stretch out your calf muscles.
The symptoms of the occasional charley horse are often straightforward to avoid after the underlying cause has been identified and addressed. Take the following actions to reduce your risk of future muscle spasms:
- You may also stretch your calf muscles by standing on the tips of your toes for a few seconds. The symptoms of the occasional charley horse are often straightforward to prevent after the underlying cause has been identified and addressed. Consider taking the following strategies to reduce your risk of future muscle spasms:
A frequent occurrence, Charley horses can arise in any muscle and at any moment. They’re typically curable, and in certain cases, they can even be prevented. Pain induced by a spasm is usually temporary, lasting no more than a day or two. However, if you are experiencing charley horses on a regular basis, you should consult your doctor about possible remedies.
7 Causes of Cramps & Charley Horses
Or have you ever been in the middle of a fantastic jog when you are suddenly attacked with a charley horse in your calf or hamstring? It happens to the best of us. I believe that most of us have experienced a muscular cramp, spasm, or charley horse at some point in our lives, but do you know why you get muscle spasms and how to prevent them? For the sake of this discussion, I’d want to limit myself to the sort of muscle spasms that affect the muscles known as “skeletal muscles” for the time being.
- Skeletal muscles are also known as skeletal muscles.
- It has come over my ears that people are saying things like, “I need to eat more bananas,” and “I need to drink more water.” Andy, the PTA and gym supervisor at Back in Motion’s Portland location, was working with a patient when I happened to overhear him.
- Andy suggested the patient perform some light stretching right away, which helped to lessen the discomfort.
- They switched to a different workout and the spasm was no longer present.
- Andy addressed her concerns about muscular weariness and possibly dehydration very away, providing a reasonable and sound explanation.
Overuse or muscle fatigue
- It is possible to exert excessive strain on a muscle by performing an activity in excess of the recommended number of repetitions, too rapidly, or with poor mechanics.
- Muscles require moisture in order to perform a correct contraction. When the nerves that control the muscles are deprived of water and salt, they can become oversensitive and cause the muscles to contract or spasm involuntarily.
- When it comes to producing an efficient contraction, muscles require the proper balance of glucose, sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
- Vascular constriction reduces blood flow to muscles, which affects their ability to provide oxygen, hydration, and electrolyte delivery.
- Activates nerve endings in the brain, instructing them to contract in order to protect the body from future harm.
- This might cause the muscle to experience discomfort and cramping as a result of the altered messages.
Side effect of medication
Put some weight on it: if it is your calf or foot, try standing up and putting some weight on it. In order to determine if it is a muscle in your hand or arm, try placing your hand on a table or wall and resting your body weight on it.
- Using self-massage or trigger point pressure can assist to relieve muscular spasm and increase blood flow to the muscle, which in turn increases oxygen and electrolytes in the muscle. Apply direct pressure on the painful part of the muscle spasm and hold for 60-90 seconds before releasing the pressure applied to the spasm. The use of thera-canes and thera-hooks can be beneficial while doing this method. Gentle stretching can help to offset the symptoms of a spasm by elongating the muscular tissue that has been constricted during the spasm. Wrist stretches, hamstring stretches, and calf stretches are among the most common types of stretches.
- Ice vs heat: Heat is usually preferable for muscle spasms since it may be calming and can help enhance blood flow to the muscle spasm. Ice is also an option. For some, cold is more effective than heat because it lessens discomfort, which in turn helps reduce muscular spasms
- Nevertheless, ice can be irritating and cause spasms to intensify in certain people
- Therefore, take caution while using ice.
Related:What is Dry Needling
Muscle spasms should always be reported to your doctor if they cause you worry, occur frequently or do not go away on their own after being treated. Your doctor will be able to assist you in determining the severity of the disease and making the proper treatment suggestions for you. Physical therapy may be advised in some cases, at which point someone like me would conduct a complete evaluation to establish whether or not we may be of use. It was two years ago today that I saw a patient who had been suffering from leg cramps for several years.
The lower leg spasms in another patient I treated recently for cramping in the lower legs were simply due to overcorrection of a foot condition with wonderful sneakers and orthotics.
Anyone may come in for a free 30-minute consultation at Back in Motion® without needing a prescription from a doctor, and the physical therapist can assess if the patient’s problem falls within the scope of their practice.
So please do not hesitate to arrange an appointment if you are experiencing muscle cramps, spasms, or charley horses.
By Mike Moras, DPT
Charley horse (also known as Acharley) is a muscle spasm, which occurs when a muscle contracts up on its own without any external stimulus. Muscle cramps can occur anywhere on your body at any time. They’re rather frequent in the legs.
Charley Horse Causes
Among the things that might set off a charley horse are:
- Excessive muscular contractions due to poor blood supply Notstretchingenough
- Involvement in physical activities in hot heat
- A deficiency in magnesium and/or potassium in your diet A spinal cord injury or a pinched nerve in your neck or back are examples of such problems. Diabetic nephropathy
Muscle cramps are also a side effect of various medications, such as those listed below:
- Diuretics (often known as “water pills”) are medications that remove fluid from your body, such as furosemide (Lasix), hydrochlorothiazide (Microzide), and others. It is used to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Donepezil (Aricept) is a medication. Neostigmine (Prostigmine), which is used to treat myasthenia gravis
- Nifedipine (Procardia), which is used to treat angina and excessive blood pressure
- And other medications. Raloxifene (Evista), a drug used to treat osteoporosis. Medications for asthma, include terbutaline (Brethine) and albuterol (Proventil, Ventolin)
- Tolcapone (Tasmar), which is used to treat Parkinson’s disease. cholesterol-lowering statins such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), fluvastatin (Lescol), lovastatin (Mevacor), pravastatin (Pravachol), rosuvastatin (Crestor), or simvastatin (Zocor)
- Statins for diabetes
- Statins for high blood pressure
Charley Horse Risk Factors
Certain persons are more prone to getting charley horses than others:
- Overweight or obese people over the age of 50
- Athletes, pregnant women, and pregnant women Those who suffer from illnesses such as diabetes, thyroid, liver, or nervous system problems
Charley Horse Diagnosis
There is no need to visit your doctor unless you have a charley horse in addition to one of the following conditions:
- A feeling of weakness or numbness
- Vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive perspiration (which might result in dehydration)
- Overindulging in alcoholic beverages
Your symptoms and medical history will be discussed with you by your doctor. They’ll also do a physical examination. They may conduct blood tests, muscle testing, or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies to rule out a medical issue that is causing the cramping.
Charley Horse Treatment
If you get a charley horse in your calf or in the back of your thigh (hamstring), place your weight on the afflicted leg and gently bend your knees to relieve the discomfort. Alternatively, you can sit or lie down with your leg out straight and lift the top of your foot towards your head. Holding on to a chair while bending the knee of the afflicted leg will relieve a cramp in the front of your thigh (quadriceps). Pulling your foot up near your buttock will help you feel more comfortable. Massage, an Epsom salt bath, or the use of a heating pad can all help to relax the muscle.
Most of the time, the charley horse will come to a halt within a few minutes.
Charley Horse Prevention
Preventing cramps from occurring in the first place:
- Eat more meals that are high in vitamin C and magnesium
- Drink plenty of water
- And stretch before and after exercise. Stretching before exercise can assist to prevent tense muscles throughout the workout session. Cramping caused by other factors can be alleviated by daily stretching.
- Put on a pair of comfy shoes. Limit the amount of alcoholic beverages you consume
- Increase your physical activity gradually rather than all at once. Don’t exercise straight after eating
- Don’t smoke
- Don’t drink alcohol right after eating.
Muscle cramp – Symptoms and causes
When you have a muscle cramp, one or more of your muscles tighten in an unexpected and involuntary manner. If you’ve ever woken up in the middle of the night or been stopped in your tracks by a sudden charley horse, you know that muscular cramps may be excruciatingly painful to deal with. Muscle cramps, though normally innocuous, can make it hard to utilize the afflicted muscle for a short period of time. Muscle cramps can occur after prolonged durations of physical activity or manual labor, particularly in hot temperatures.
The majority of the time, self-care procedures may be used to cure muscular cramps at home.
The majority of muscular cramps occur in the leg muscles, notably in the calf muscles. Besides feeling or seeing a mass of muscle tissue beneath your skin, you may also experience or notice a quick, acute discomfort.
When to see a doctor
Muscle cramps normally go away on their own and are not acute enough to necessitate medical attention in most cases. Consult your doctor if your cramps include any of the following symptoms:
- Result in extreme discomfort
- Are connected with leg edema, redness, or changes in the appearance of the skin
- These conditions are connected with muscular weakness. This occurs on a regular basis
- Self-care does not help
- Instead, it makes things worse. Don’t appear to be related with a clearly identifiable cause, such as severe exercise
Muscle cramps can be caused by overuse of a muscle, dehydration, muscle tension, or just being in one posture for an extended amount of time.
In many situations, however, the exact reason for the condition is unknown. Although the vast majority of muscular cramps are innocuous, some may be associated with a medical condition such as one of the following:
- There is insufficient blood supply. When the arteries that supply blood to your legs become narrowed (a condition known as arteriosclerosis of the extremities), it might cause cramp-like pain in your legs and feet when you’re exercising. These pains normally subside after a few minutes of ceasing exercise. Compression of the nerves. Compression of nerves in your spine (lumbar stenosis) can cause cramp-like pain in your legs as well as other symptoms. The discomfort normally intensifies as you walk for a longer period of time. If you walk in a slightly flexed stance, such as you would if you were pulling a shopping cart in front of you, you may find that your symptoms improve or are delayed in onset.
- Mineral depletion is a problem. Leg cramps might be exacerbated if you consume too little potassium, calcium, or magnesium. Diuretics, which are commonly taken to treat high blood pressure, can also deplete these minerals in the body.
Muscle cramps can be caused by a variety of factors, some of which are as follows:
- Age. Because older persons lose muscular mass, the residual muscle is more susceptible to being overstressed
- Dehydration. Cramping is common in athletes who become weary and dehydrated when participating in warm-weather activities. Cramping is also common in pregnant women. Muscle cramps are also prevalent during pregnancy
- However, they are less severe. Medical conditions are listed below. It is possible that you will be more susceptible to muscular cramps if you have diabetes, or if you have nerve, liver, or thyroid diseases.
Cramping may be avoided by following these steps:
- Dehydration should be avoided. Drink enough of fluids on a daily basis. This varies depending on your diet, your gender, your level of exercise, the weather, your physical and mental well-being, your age, and the drugs you take. Fluids aid in the contraction and relaxation of your muscles, as well as keeping muscle cells hydrated and less irritable. Replace fluids at regular intervals while your exercise, and continue to drink water or other fluids after you’ve stopped
- Make sure to stretch your muscles. Stretching should be done before and after using any muscle for a lengthy amount of time. Stretching before bedtime might help if you suffer from leg cramps at night. Light activity, such as riding a stationary bicycle for a few minutes before night, may also be beneficial in preventing cramps while you’re sleeping
- For example,
3rd of March, 2021
- Muscle cramps are a painful condition. An acronym for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Winkelman JW (accessed November 18, 2015)
- Winkelman JW. Leg cramps that occur during night. Muscle spasms, last accessed on November 18, 2015. Professional Edition of the Merck Manual. On November 18, 2015, I was able to access
Hand or foot spasms: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
Spasms are spasms of the muscles of the hands, thumbs, feet, or toes. They can occur anywhere on the body. Spasticity is typically transient, although it can be intense and painful when it occurs. The severity of the symptoms is determined by the underlying reason. They may include the following:
- Cramping, fatigue, and muscle weakness are all symptoms of depression. Numbness, tingling, or a sensation of being “on pins and needles”
- Motions that are uncontrolled, aimless, and fast
Leg cramps in the middle of the night are prevalent among the elderly. Muscle cramps or spasms are frequently accompanied by no apparent reason. The following are examples of possible causes of hand or foot spasms:
- Electrolyte or mineral levels that are abnormally high in the body
- Disorders of the brain, such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, dystonia, and Huntington’s disease Having chronic renal disease and requiring dialysis
- Neuropathy is defined as damage to a single nerve or nerve group (mononeuropathy) or to several nerves (polyneuropathy) that are related to muscles. The lack of sufficient fluids in your body is known as dehydration. As a result of worry or panic, people may experience hyperventilation, which is fast and deep breathing. Muscle cramps, which are frequently induced by overuse when participating in sports or working
- In pregnancy, this occurs most frequently during the third trimester. Thyroid problems
- Thyroid problems
- Vitamin D deficiency
- The use of some pharmaceuticals
If a vitamin D deficiency is determined to be the root cause, a health care provider may recommend vitamin D supplements. Calcium supplements may also help. Keeping muscles loose is made easier by staying active. Aerobic exercise, particularly swimming, as well as strength-training exercises, are beneficial. But care must be taken not to overdo activity, which may worsen the spasms. Drinking plenty of fluids during exercise is also important. Immediately notify your healthcare provider if you experience recurrent spasms in your hands or feet.
Blood and urine tests may be done.
- Hormone levels
- Kidney function tests
- 25-OH vitamin D levels
- Potassium, calcium, and magnesium levels
- And a variety of other tests. Nerve conduction and electromyography tests may be conducted to evaluate whether or not there is a problem with the nerve or muscle.
The treatment for spasms is determined on the underlying cause. As an example, if your symptoms are caused by dehydration, your healthcare practitioner may likely advise you to consume extra water. Certain medications and supplements, according to some research, may be beneficial. Spasms of the feet, carpopedal spasms, spasms of the hands, spasms of the feet Spasms in the hands Chonchol, M., Smogorzewski, M., Stubbbs, J., Yu, A., Smogorzewski, M., Yu, A., Smogorzewski, M., Smogorzewski, M., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A., Yu, A Disruptions in the equilibrium of calcium, magnesium, and phosphate.
- The Kidney is a novel by Brenner and Rector.
- Elsevier, Philadelphia, PA, 2020:chap 18.
- In: Cifu DX, ed.Physical Braddom’s Medicine (Braddom’s Physical Medicine).
- 23 in Rehabilitation, 5th ed., Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Science; 2016.
- Jankovic and A.E.
- Parkinson disease and other movement disorders are diagnosed and evaluated at this clinic.
- Elsevier, 7th ed., Philadelphia, PA, 2016:chap 23.
- Shelat, DO, FACP, FAAN, Attending Neurologist and Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurology at Stony Brook University School of Medicine in Stony Brook, New York, has made the most recent revisions to this document.
VeriMed Healthcare Network supplied the review for this article. In addition, David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial staff examined the manuscript for accuracy.
Charley horse is another name for this animal. On this page, you will find
See, Play and Learn
When you get a muscle cramp, it means that one or more of your muscles clench or spasm suddenly and without warning. They are quite prevalent and frequently arise as a result of physical activity. Muscle cramps, particularly leg cramps, can be a problem for certain people at night. They can be uncomfortable and can last anywhere from a few seconds to many minutes. Cramping can occur in any muscle, although it occurs most frequently in the following:
What causes muscle cramps?
Muscle cramps can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Overexerting or overstretching a muscle. This is the most prevalent reason for the problem. If you suffer from a spinal cord injury or a pinched nerve in your neck or back, you may experience compression of your nerves. Dehydration
- Elevated amounts of electrolytes (e.g., magnesium, potassium, and calcium)
- There is insufficient blood flow to your muscles
- Pregnancy, certain medications, and other factors Gettingdialysis
Muscle cramps can have a variety of causes, some of which are unknown.
Who is at risk for muscle cramps?
Muscle cramps can occur in everyone, however they are more prevalent in certain individuals:
- People over the age of 50
- Those who are overweight Women who are pregnant
- Those who have specific medical issues, such as thyroid and nervous system abnormalities
When do I need to see a health care provider for muscle cramps?
Muscle cramps are normally mild and disappear after a few minutes of occurrence. However, you should consult your health-care practitioner if you have the following symptoms:
- Are really harsh
- This occurs on a regular basis
- Stretching and consuming plenty of water will not help you feel better
- Last for a lengthy period of time
- These symptoms are accompanied by swelling, redness, or a warm sensation
- These symptoms are accompanied by muscular weakness.
What are the treatments for muscle cramps?
Muscle cramps are typically not serious and do not require medical attention. You may be able to get some relief from cramps if you do the following:
- Using gentle stretching or massage motions to relax the muscle Applying heat when a muscle is tight and ice when a muscle is painful will help to relieve the pain. If you are dehydrated, you should drink extra water.
If the cramps are caused by another medical condition, addressing that condition will most likely alleviate them. When it comes to cramp prevention, there are medications available that are occasionally prescribed by doctors, but they are not always helpful and may have negative effects. Consult with your healthcare practitioner about the risks and advantages of taking medications.
Can muscle cramps be prevented?
You may avoid muscular cramps by doing the following:
- Stretch your muscles, especially before you engage in strenuous activity. If you get leg cramps at night on a regular basis, stretch your leg muscles before bed and drink lots of water. Using sports drinks can help you replenish electrolytes if you engage in strenuous exercise or exercise in hot weather
Muscle Cramps – Neurologic Disorders
Other conditions can cause cramping-like symptoms, including:
- However, the spasm is frequently more prolonged (often accompanied by recurrent short muscular jerks)
- It is usually bilateral and widespread, but isolated carpopedal spasm may occur
- And it is usually caused by tetany. It is possible for people with peripheral arterial disease (claudication) to have calf discomfort during exercise, but this pain is caused by insufficient blood supply to the muscles, rather than by the muscles contracting as they would during a cramp. Muscular cramps are a feeling that occurs when there is no muscle contraction or ischemia
- They are also known as phantom cramps.
Etiology of Muscle Cramps
Leg cramps are one of the most prevalent forms of pain in the legs.
- In the absence of an underlying illness, leg cramps that are predominantly nocturnal are classified as benign idiopathic leg cramps. Muscle cramping connected with exercise (cramps that occur during or shortly after exercise)
Despite the fact that practically everyone has muscular cramps at some point in their lives, several circumstances enhance the likelihood and severity of cramps. This list includes the following items:
- Muscle tightness in the calf muscles (for example, due to a lack of stretching, a lack of exercise, or in certain cases, persistent lower leg edema)
- Electrolyte problems (for example, low potassium or magnesium levels in the body)
- Disorders of the nervous system or metabolism When individuals with end-stage renal disease undergo dialysis, a considerable volume of fluid is removed. Drugs
Muscle cramps can also be caused by toxins in the body. The evaluation of muscular cramping focuses on identifying what is treatable and what is not. In many situations, the illness that is causing the cramps has already been identified or is causing additional symptoms that are more distressing than the cramps themselves. A description of cramps, including their length, frequency, location, apparent causes, and any related symptoms, should be obtained from the patient’s history of the current disease.
Dehydration and electrolyte or bodily fluid imbalances are caused by a variety of factors, including vomiting, diarrhea and intense activity and sweating, recent dialysis, the use of a diuretic and the presence of a pregnant woman.
It is necessary to obtain a thorough drug history, which includes alcohol consumption.
Pulses should be palpated, and blood pressure should be taken in all four extremities at the same time. It is possible to have ischemia in a limb if the pulse is weak or the ankle-brachial blood pressure ratio in that leg is low. Concern should be expressed about the following findings:
- Involvement of the upper extremities or truncal region
- Hyper- or hyporeflexia
- Muscle weakness
- Signs of alcoholism Hypovolemia
- Pain or numbness in a peripheral nerve, plexus, or root distribution.
In addition to idiopathic leg cramps, focal cramps can be caused by musculoskeletal anomalies, peripheral nervous system disorders, or an early degenerative condition that can be asymmetrical, such as motor neuron disease. A peripheral neuropathy, plexopathy, or radiculopathy may be present in the presence of focal hyporeflexia. The presence of hyperreflexia in individuals with generalized cramps (especially those who are tremulous) implies a systemic source (eg, ionized hypocalcemia; sometimes alcoholism, a motor neuron disorder, or a drug, although effects on deep tendon reflexes can vary by drug).
- However, it can also be a benign finding.
- Testing is performed when aberrant clinical results are discovered.
- If a patient is experiencing generalized cramps with no known reason, blood glucose, renal function tests, and electrolyte levels, including calcium and magnesium, should be examined.
- If a patient has tetany, blood tests for ionized calcium and arterial blood gases (ABGs) to establish respiratory alkalosis are performed.
- If there is localized muscular weakness or neurologic symptoms, an MRI of the brain and typically the spinal cord is performed.
- When a cramp strikes, extending the muscles that are affected usually alleviates the cramp.
- Warmth (using a heated towel or heating pad, having a warm bath or shower, for example) and cold (massaging the afflicted muscle with ice) can both assist to relieve pain and inflammation.
- Not engaging in physical activity shortly following a meal
- Taking a gentle stretch before working out or going to bed is recommended. Drinking enough of fluids (especially potassium-containing drinks) after exercise
- And It is not necessary to use stimulants (e.g., caffeinated beverages, tobacco products, ephedrine, pseudoephedrine)
- I’m not a smoker
The runner’s stretch is quite beneficial. In a lunge position, a person stands with one leg ahead and bent at the knee, and the other leg behind with the knee straight: one leg forward, one leg behind. To maintain balance, the hands can be put against the wall. Both heels stay firmly planted on the ground. A further bending of the knee of the front leg is performed until a stretch can be felt along the back of the opposing leg. The stretch is larger the longer the distance between the two feet and the bigger the amount of flexion in the front knee.
Afterwards, the stretches are repeated on the opposite side.
calcium supplements, quinine, magnesium, benzodiazepines).
Quinine has been shown to be useful in some studies, however it is no longer advised due to the possibility of major side effects (eg, arrhythmias, thrombocytopenia, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpuraand hemolytic-uremic syndrome, severe allergic reactions).
Nausea, vomiting, heartburn, dizziness, and tremor are just a few of the side effects. Pickle juice is recommended by some athletic coaches and physicians for the treatment of muscular cramps, although there is inadequate evidence to support this claim.
- Leg cramps are frequent
- The most common causes are benign idiopathic leg cramps and exercise-associated muscular cramping
- Cramps must be distinguished from claudication and dystonias
- A clinical examination is typically sufficient
- And leg cramps must be differentiated from claudication and dystonias. The act of stretching can assist to ease and avoid cramps. In most cases, drug treatment is not advised.
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How to Get Rid of a Charley Horse – 4 simple fixes
Skip to the main content How to get rid of a charley horse in the following ways: This is a condition that affects both athletic and inactive people. Amuscle cramps are excruciatingly painful, and if you’ve ever been awakened out of sleep by a searing ache in your leg that left you gasping for air, you understand how awful they can be. If you’ve never had the pleasure of riding a charley horse (also known as a Charlie Horse, depending on who you ask), consider yourself fortunate. In this post, we’ll go over four of the most effective strategies for dealing with or preventing muscular cramps.
What is a charley horse?
It is most commonly referred to as a “charley horse” because it is an involuntary reflex in which the neurons controlling a muscle (typically the calf muscle) misfire, causing the muscle to freeze and lock into a contracted posture. A charley horse can be quite painful, and it can leave you limping around for many days after it occurs. In addition to the calf muscles, the muscles in the soles of the feet can also cramp, which can be quite painful as well. Cramps can develop in any region of the body if muscles are overworked and fatigued.
Here’s a fun piece on the subject: The Origins of the Expression “Charley Horse”
What causes muscle cramps?
There is substantial controversy in the scientific community regarding what causes a charley horse because they frequently occur in healthy persons and can strike at any time of day or night, seemingly for no discernible reason. Muscle cramps, for example, can occur in middle-aged and older adults, but they are also prevalent in athletes (such as long-distance runners and cyclists) and those who lead physically active lifestyles. Certain populations are known to be more susceptible than others, and certain circumstances are known to enhance the likelihood of contracting the disease.
People at Risk to Get a Charley Horse
Here is a brief list of the people who are most at risk of getting muscular cramps:
- Intense exercisers, those who are dehydrated, or people who utilize muscle power in hot conditions People who have specific medical diseases, such as nerve abnormalities, cirrhosis, an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism), or who take certain drugs
- People who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
- Women who walk around in high heels
- Those who are elderly
- Women who are pregnant
Significant hazards of low magnesium levels during pregnancy are discussed in another article. Cramping is common among long-distance runners and cyclists, as well as other persons who engage in frequent physical activity. Although it is possible that this is due to overuse, it is also possible that these individuals have electrolyte shortages or imbalances as a result of losing vital electrolytes through perspiration. Another risk related with acquiring a charley horse is dehydration, which, as you can expect, has an impact on athletes.
Women who wear high heels may develop muscular cramps as a result of the posture of their feet and legs in high heel shoes, which puts them in a cramp-prone position.
1. How to Get Rid of a Charley Horse – Maintain Electrolyte Balance
Mineral deficiencies or electrolyte imbalances, such as those resulting from lack or excess of magnesium, potassium, calcium, or sodium, are also known to increase the likelihood of contracting charley horse. Natural electrolytes are essential for life, health, and peak performance, according to a related article. A class of minerals known as electrolytes play a crucial role in the function of the muscles. Mineral imbalance, according to some studies, can impair blood flow to the muscles by allowing them to contract but not relax.
Low levels of any of these minerals can allow the muscle to contract but prevent it from relaxing. So, if you want to get rid of a charley horse or avoid getting one in the future, try adding electrolytes to your diet.
- The mineral potassium can impair the muscles’ capacity to utilise glycogen, a sugar that serves as the muscles’ primary source of energy when they are deficient in potassium. SODIUM: This is a vital electrolyte
- Nevertheless, the majority of individuals obtain adequate of it from their daily diet. Sodium should only be a dietary issue if your intake is insufficient or if you perspire excessively when working or participating in physical activity. If any of these two scenarios applies to you, replacing sodium should be considered
- Otherwise, it should not. Magnesium: Magnesium is a necessary element for muscular function, since it aids in the contraction and relaxation of muscles. Chloride is an electrolyte that helps your body balance the amount of fluid that is present in your system. Since of chloride’s involvement in maintaining fluid balance, it is particularly significant because dehydration can be a contributing reason to muscular cramps.
Visit this page to learn more about the elete electrolyte add-in, which contains all four of the electrolytes listed above and more.
2. Supplement with Magnesium
Researchers in the United Kingdom discovered a few years ago that supplementing with 300 mg of magnesium (in the form of magnesium citrate) decreased overnight or nocturnal leg cramps in people who suffered from chronic leg cramps. Potassium, like magnesium, is an electrolyte that may be found in your muscles. As a matter of fact, when your muscles contract, they cause potassium to be released into the surrounding tissue. A class of minerals known as electrolytes play a crucial role in the function of the muscles.
- As previously said, muscle cramps are common among pregnant women, and it’s not surprising considering that expecting moms have a high requirement for magnesium, and a lack of magnesium is one of the most compelling explanations about why pregnant women have muscle cramps.
- Both are necessary.
- Given this, as well as the importance of magnesium in muscular function, it seems sense to begin by addressing the underlying cause of a charley horse by addressing magnesium deficiencies.
- Although it is possible that a deficit is not the root problem, this simple remedy may make all the difference.
3. Correct Dehydration
Maintaining enough fluid intake is a third preventative approach, which is particularly important if you sweat a lot in hot weather, exercise for lengthy periods of time, or work in hot settings. Dehydration can be life-threatening, but did you know that even slight dehydration can cause your blood volume to decrease, which, in turn, can lower the amount of oxygen delivered to your muscles? It is possible for muscles to go into spasm when the oxygen supply to the muscles is restricted. Make sure to drink lots of water throughout the day, with electrolytes thrown in for good measure.
However, you should not rely on traditional sports drinks to keep muscular cramps at bay.
By clicking here, you can purchase the elete Electrolyte add-in.
4. Stretch Properly
If a cramp does arise, try extending the muscles that are being cramped. Calves may be stretched by bringing your toes towards your knees while keeping the afflicted leg extended straight, for example, to alleviate calf cramps. After that, soak in a warm bath or take a hot shower (allowing the water to reach the afflicted area) to aid in the relaxation of the muscle. Third, gently massage the afflicted region, taking care not to apply too much pressure to the skin or muscles. Use an ice pack on the injured muscle to minimize the discomfort and swelling associated with the injury.
Finally, if you are experiencing persistent or severe leg cramps, you should consult your doctor.
It might be a symptom of a more serious issue, therefore it’s crucial to consult with your doctor first before proceeding. Related article: Liquid trace minerals – How to Determine the Quality of a Mineral Supplement. Sources:
- Leg cramps in the middle of the night. Prevention Magazine has an electronic edition that may be accessed online. The Complete Book of Vitamins and Minerals is a reference book that has a comprehensive list of vitamins and minerals. New York, New York: Rodale Press, 1998, pp. 319-325
- C. Roffe, S. Sills, P. Crome, and P. Jones. It was determined that magnesium citrate was effective in treating chronic leg cramps in a randomized, cross-over, placebo controlled experiment. Med Sci Monit. 2002
- 8(5): CR326-30
- Med Sci Monit.
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