Treatment for Leg CrampsThe treatment for leg cramps depends on what the leg cramp is caused by.  For example, the treatment for leg cramps is different if the cramp is due to dehydration when compared to a leg cramp that is due to a blood clot in the veins of the calf.

These are some treatments for leg cramps that can be used to manage the pain and treat the underlying cause:

6 “Must Know” Treatments for Leg Cramps

1. Hydration

Sometimes the leg cramp is due to dehydration that cramps the muscles of the calf.

If this is the cause of the leg cramp, the best treatment is to drink plenty of water or electrolyte-replacement solution in order to provide more water to the muscle cells of the leg that have gone into spasm because of a lack of adequate hydration.

2. Rest

If the leg cramp is due to over-activity, such as when jogging or running, the best thing is to rest the calf.  You should sit down and put the leg up on a chair or couch.

Gently stretch the calf out by pulling back on the foot so that the muscle spasm can be relieved.

Once you relieve the spasm by stretching the muscle, you can rest for several minutes to decrease the pain and to allow you to return to the activity you had been doing.

3. Ice

If the leg cramp is from an injury to the calf, you can apply ice to the calf muscle, also known as the gastrocnemius muscle.  Ice should be applied for thirty minutes at a time and you should use a cloth or towel between the ice pack and your skin so that you don’t freeze the skin.

Ice should not be used after 48 hours following the injury as this can increase the degree of spasm in your calf muscle.

4. Local Heat

You can apply a heating pad to the back of the calf, over the gastrocnemius muscle.  The heat soaks into the tissues and improves the blood supply to the muscle that is in spasm.

If the muscle spasm is deep, you may have to forget about using a regular heating pad that only heats the skin and a small portion of the muscle and should instead use a heating pad that gives off far infrared ray heat (FIR heat).

This is a type of heating pad that can soak more deeply into the muscles to relieve deeper muscle spasms.

Always apply heat for thirty minutes at a time and place a cloth or towel between the heating pad and the skin so that you don’t burn the skin from the high heat of the heating pad.

5. Gentle Stretching

The leg cramp due to spasm of the muscles can be relieved by gently stretching the muscles.  Sit comfortably on a couch and lean over so that you can reach your toes.

Gently pull back on the toes and foot so that the gastrocnemius muscle can stretch out, relieving the spasm.

6. Blood Thinners

If the leg cramp is from a blood clot in the deep veins of the legs, this is a more serious problem than a leg cramp from a spasm in the muscle.

As there is a risk of the blood clot traveling to the lungs, the treatment of a leg cramp from a blood clot involves seeing a doctor and taking blood thinning medications to allow the blood clot to dissipate.

 

Treatments for leg cramps, what’s your preferred method?

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