Cramps - Do You Suffer From Them?

A cramp is an unpleasant sensation which is caused by contraction, usually of a muscle. There can be various reasons for a cramp as also a cramp can occur in various parts of the body. A cramp can be caused by cold or overexertion. Stomach cramps called as colic can be caused by illness or poisoning. Read ahead to know more about cramps -

Causes and treatment
Basically, cramps are of two types. One occurs due to inadequate oxygenation of muscle, and the other is due to lack of water or salt. Cramps from poor oxygenation can be improved by rapid deep breathing, as also by stretching the muscle. Cramps that take place due to lack of salt and water can be treated by stretching the muscle, and by drinking water and increasing salt intake. If the muscle is pounded, it can increase soreness. Electrolyte disturbance may also cause cramping and tetany of muscles, particularly hypokalemia which is a lack of potassium and hypocalcemia which is a lack of calcium.

The treatment of cramps will differ for different types of cramps. Muscle cramps in particular can be treated by a soft massage on the cramped muscle, stretching the muscle and also by applying heat or cold. Heat improves superficial blood circulation and makes the muscles more flexible, so some people find that heat is more soothing for muscle cramps than ice that is cold.

Learning about Nocturnal Leg Cramps -

Nocturnal leg cramps are involuntary muscle contractions which occur in the calves, soles of the feet or other muscles in the body during the night or while resting. The duration of nocturnal leg cramps is highly variable with some cramps lasting only for a few seconds and at other times for several minutes. The soreness in the muscles generally remains for some time after the cramp ends. It has been that these cramps are more common in older populations but can happen to anyone. Though the precise cause of these cramps is unclear, potential contributing factors are believed to include low levels of certain minerals (magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium), dehydration and even prolonged sitting. Less common causes may include more serious conditions or use of drugs.

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Muscle Cramps
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