A Guide to Treating Leg Cramps

Leg cramps are common for older people and people with active lifestyle. Leg cramps are caused by muscle contractions in the calf, behind and below the knee and the feet. The pain will lasts for a few seconds. For severe cramps, it will last for a few minutes but sometimes it can go on for hours. It will ease as time goes by but there are others that go through with the pain every day. If we are suffering from this, it is crucial that we know basic treatments and make sure to properly execute it to be effective. Here’s a guide:


Consult your doctor

Recurring cramps is not a good sign. We should consult our doctor right away. If we are taking medications (such as Chlorpromazine, Lithium, Statins, Salbutamol, Cimetidine, Diuretics, etc.) that we feel contributed to the occurrence of cramps, let’s mention it so doctors can suggest other alternatives.

The main treatment is Quinine but a trial period should be observed first because it can cause serious harm.

Portals_0_altman2_runner-muscle-crampStretching exercises

Stretching can help alleviate pain. There are studies that recommend stretching exercises but there are others that do not support it. Regardless, we should try stretching and if it makes a difference, we should do it as often as thrice a day (for about five minutes).

Consider compress or massage

Cold compress generally relaxes the muscle. We should look for a cloth, put in ice and apply it directly to the leg. If we want to further relax leg cramps, we are free to consider massages. After the massage, we will feel better and lighter but of course there’s still pain.

Get plenty of rest and liquid

If we sleep, our muscles will relax and they will heal. When we experience cramps, our electrolytes are depleted. We need to restore it so we have to hydrate by drinking fluids especially those containing electrolytes.