Leg cramps can be incredibly painful, and when they start, you may wonder if there is anything you can do to stop the pain. While many cramps resolve themselves in a few seconds, some people may experience lasting cramps that simply will not release.
When looking at ways to get rid of leg cramps, there are two main categories. These include preventative measures that you can take to prevent cramps from occurring, as well as cramp treatment for when you are actively experiencing a cramp. Having the information for what you can do in both scenarios will better prepare you to prevent and ease leg cramps.
Below are nine simple tricks to get rid of and keep leg cramps away. Having these tricks will better enable you to enjoy life a little more without having to worry about painful leg cramps.
The most proactive approach to getting rid of leg cramps is to stop them before they even get the chance to cause you pain. Below are four ways in which you can prevent the chances of getting cramps.
A key component to preventing cramps is to stretch before any strenuous exercise. Stretching has been shown to reduce the frequency of cramps experienced by those who experience leg cramps during sleep.
For leg cramps, you should target the calf, foot, and thigh muscles when stretching. This can be accomplished through a standing toe touch, sitting toe touch, butterfly stretch, and other leg-specific stretches.
Stretching can be a quick and easy assurance to preemptively avoid cramps. Incorporating a morning and evening stretch routine can also provide potential relief to cramps experienced throughout the day and during the night.
Improper hydration is a common cause of leg cramps. Water is essential in the proper functions of muscles, and when deprived of water, muscles can spasm, resulting in a painful cramp.
Water in the bloodstream is also the main delivery system for muscles to get the necessary electrolytes required for muscle contraction. The water is also vital to get rid of waste products from muscle cells.
Hydration is important in not only enabling proper muscle function but is also vital in the body’s temperature regulation. Heatstroke and other heat-related ailments can result in muscle cramps as well as more serious conditions.
When the weather starts heating up, ensuring you are adequately hydrated is a very important factor in your overall health. Not only will you suffer from fewer leg cramps, but you will be ensuring your body is able to function as it should.
Muscles work through the delicate balance of electrolytes found within your bloodstream and cells, selectively binding ions depending on whether they are being contracted or relaxed.
The electrolytes that are needed for proper muscle function are obtained through your diet. If an individual’s electrolyte levels are low, it can result in muscle spasms and cramps.
To remedy this electrolyte deficiency, there are many sports drinks that contain electrolytes to keep your body at the proper electrolyte concentration to minimize the muscle cramps and electrolyte deficiency that can be caused as a result of strenuous exercise.
As a preventative, individuals can ensure they have a diet that has adequate amounts of potassium, calcium, and magnesium. These electrolytes play a large role in proper muscle function and ensuring your body is prepared with these electrolytes before a strenuous activity can greatly reduce the chances of a cramp.
Getting excited about an event and just wanting to jump right into the action may be people’s first instinct when doing their favorite physical activity, however, this is a recipe for disaster. When your muscles are unprepared and you suddenly begin a strenuous routine, they are more likely to spasm or cramp.
Warming up helps reduce the chances of cramping by increasing the circulation to your muscles. As described previously, blood is the main transporter of the necessary electrolytes and of waste products away from the muscle. When warming up you are essentially kickstarting the blood vessels around your muscles, which allows them to function better.
Warming up reduces cramping, but it also greatly reduces the chance of injury during physical activity. Carving out time to properly warmup is a great way to ensure your physical activity can be enjoyed to its fullest without the interruption of injury or cramps.
Even with the best prevention of cramps, they can still occur. Being prepared with ways to remedy a stubborn cramp is the next best thing to preventing them.
For those stubborn cramps that will simply not let go, one of the most effective ways to combat them is to massage the cramp and the surrounding area. Massaging the cramped muscle can slowly release the tension from the cramp and allow it to return to its relaxed state.
Many professional athletic teams actually have masseuses ready for these occasions. You don’t need to be a formal masseuse to get results, though! For leg cramp massages you just need to apply pressure to the affected muscle and rub along the entire length of the muscle with firm pressure. If you are unable to do it with your hand, a roller can be used, which will allow for more concentrated and consistent pressure to be applied.
To go along with the massage, a great method to release a cramp is to attempt to stretch out the area that is cramping. This is easier said than done when in the middle of a muscle cramp but it can be an effective means of stopping a cramp.
One of the most common leg cramps experienced is a cramp of the calf muscle. To combat this leg cramp an individual should grab their toes and pull them toward their body with their leg fully extended. In addition to this stretch, utilizing the other hand to gently massage the area while stretching can allow the muscle to release.
Getting familiar with different stretching positions can make you more flexible, but it can also be a great way to learn the best way to alleviate cramps depending on where you get a cramp.
Heat or Cold
The application of heat is an effective way of treating a cramp because it increases the circulation in the area surrounding the affected muscle. Applying heat to your muscle can allow your muscles to relax and release. This is similar to the reasoning behind why a hot water bath is relaxing.
For a painful cramp, the application of cooling items like ice or cooling gels can alleviate some of the discomfort. Products like Hempvana Cold As Ice Gel can provide a soothing cooling sensation to try and help alleviate the discomfort associated with a leg cramp.
Pain Relief Cream
Experiencing a painful cramp can also leave a lasting soreness even after the cramp releases. To combat this soreness, you can apply a pain relief cream like Hempvana’s Pain Relief Cream to the affected area.
In addition to utilizing the cream as a post cramp treatment, you can utilize the cream as a lubricant to massage out a leg cramp. By utilizing the cream to massage an active cramp, it will provide relief while simultaneously working to alleviate the tension of the cramp through the massage.
Pain Relief Roller
A portable solution to help with painful cramps is to keep Hempvana’s Roll-on Pain Relief in your car, bag, or even your gym locker. Strategically placing these on the go pain relief rollers will ensure you have pain relief in the event you ever get a stubborn leg cramp.
The roller applicator is great as a quick and easy application but it also can aid in the massaging of a cramped muscle. With the application being as simple as removing the cap and rolling, it makes this a fast and efficient pain relief option for leg cramps.
In summary, leg cramps are something that people of all ages have dealt with at some point or another. While many cramps go away in a few seconds, some can linger and cause discomfort, pain, and frustration that they aren’t releasing.
To combat leg cramps there are two approaches that can be taken, which include the preventative approach and the treatment approach. Having the know-how and the muscle relief products by Hempvana can prepare you for even the most stubborn of leg cramps — good luck!