leg cramps at night treatment

Nocturnal leg cramps are a tight, knotted feeling in your legs that happens at night. The FDA has advised patients who get diagnosed with leg cramps should take quinine in order to find the significant relief. Treating cramps that occur as a result of serious liver disease can be more difficult. Nighttime or nocturnal leg cramps, which affect more than half of adults, can also be triggered by tiredness. They may affect both children and adults. Nighttime cramps are not serious but can be very painful. They may recommend changing the dose or taking you off of the medication. Tell your doctor if your leg cramps started just as you began taking a new medication. Leg cramps are different from restless legs syndrome. For some reason, the vast majority of people have these cramps only at night. Good sources of these minerals may include milk, bananas, oranges, apricots, grapes, cabbage, broccoli, sweet potatoes, yogurt, and saltwater fish. These include magnesium, diltiazem, vitamin B complex, vitamin E, naftidrofuryl, orphenadrine and verapamil. ", Lancaster General Health: "Leg Cramps, Nocturnal. WebMD does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Some simple things you might keep you from getting cramps: NYU Langone Medical Center: "Nocturnal Leg Cramps. Forceful stretching of the affected muscles usually relieves these leg cramps. Apply heat. 33% of people over age 60 will have a leg cramp at night at least once every two months. This stretch works by compressing the leg and effectively massaging it. The cramping is preventing you from sleeping, which in turn affects your day to day life. ", American Academy of Family Physicians: "Nocturnal Leg Cramps. Leg cramps are characterized by sudden muscle tightness, most commonly in the foot, thigh, or calf, that may last from seconds to minutes. Pain killers. Doctors and the FDA no longer recommend it because it can also cause severe bleeding and problems with your heart rhythm. However, muscle pain is less common with restless legs syndrome than it is with night leg cramps. Be sure not to begin to take any supplement without your doctor’s approval, especially if you are pregnant. Nighttime leg cramps—also called nocturnal leg cramps—can jolt a person awake in the middle of the night. You might also be able to use heat to relax away your cramps by taking a nice warm bath. Note that people taking calcium channel blockers should not eat grapefruit, drink grapefruit juice, or consume alcohol while on the medication. For older or non-nursing adult women, studies show that magnesium supplements are far less conclusive. However, nocturnal leg cramps as a parasomnia disorder is not treatable and the exact cause is unknown therefore the … Tonic water with quinine is shown to be one of the most effective home remedies for leg cramps at night that you should remember. Nocturnal leg cramps are common, with prevalence increasing in older people. 40% of pregnant women will experience leg cramps at night. night or when at rest. The next time a leg cramp strikes, try some of these tips: Your doctor might give you medications such as diltiazem (Cardizem), diphenhydramine (Benadryl), or verapamil (Calan, Verelan). But they don’t always work, and they can have harmful side effects. More often than not, they can find other medicines to treat high cholesterol. What kinds of stretches help get rid of leg … Paracetamol or ibuprofen will not help when cramp is happening as they take too long to work. Elevate. 12 reasons why you're tired -- and how to fight them. Allen, R. American Family Physician, August 2012. Massage … You may also find relief by: 1. If the cramp is severe, your muscle may be sore for days. Leg cramps at night are defined as spasmodic, painful, involuntary, contraction of skeletal muscle that occur during the night when a person is sleeping, causing sleep disturbances.Although they may occur simultaneously with other sleep disorders, nocturnal leg cramps do not have a causal link to any known underlying medical … If you take one of these drugs and experience leg cramps at night, talk to your doctor about taking a diuretic. Drinking more fluids A doctor may also prescribe muscle-relaxing drugs if cramping is severe. Night leg cramps usually involve your calf muscles, although muscles in your feet or thighs might cramp as well. As much as they may hurt, leg cramps are harmless. The side effects of calcium channel blockers may include drowsiness, increased appetite, weight gain, and breathing difficulty (within the first few doses if you have an allergy to the medication). Use a heating pad or take a warm bath. In the past, the medication quinine had been used as the last resort for treating leg cramps. Get out of bed and stand with your foot flat on the floor. Leg cramps treatment . To get relief, Most people who experience them don’t need medical treatment. бавиться от судорог в ногах по ночам, التخلص من تشنجات الرجليْن الليلية, แก้ตะคริวขาตอนนอน, Chân không bị chuột rút vào ban đêm, रात में होने वाली पैरों की ऐंठन को दूर करें (Leg Cramps at Night), Gece Oluşan Bacak Krampları Nasıl Geçer, 밤에 다리에 난 쥐를 푸는 방법, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Your doctor might give you medications such as diltiazem (Cardizem), diphenhydramine (Benadryl), or verapamil (Calan, Verelan). If you get a charley horse in your calf or in the back of your thigh (hamstring), put your weight on the affected leg and bend your knee slightly. Being rich in calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, manganese, vitamin B6 and selenium, blackstrap molasses helps ease the tight muscles. Leg cramps at night causes and treatments Who does leg cramps at night effect? This, in turn, lessens the discomforts of leg cramps. The very small amount of quinine in tonic water is unlikely to cause any side effects. It is no longer recommended as clinical studies did not prove its effectiveness. This often solves the problem. Forcefully stretching the contracted … Treating leg cramps at night, in the moment they occur, may help a person get more rest. The following treatments for breast cancer can cause leg cramps: hormonal therapy: Evista (chemical name: raloxifene) tamoxifen; Managing leg cramps. 7% of children will, as well. Maugh II, T. “The FDA warns against using quinine for leg cramps.” Los Angeles Times, July 8, 2010. If you’re unable to completely perform this stretch, simply lean forward and stretch your hands towards your toes as far as you comfortably can. Cooling the skin with cold, moist cloth 2. In this case, seek medical attention and do not apply a heating pad. Things you can do about leg cramps yourself During a cramp. It is best to follow a balanced diet to get adequate amounts rather than to change your diet drastically. Some possible home remedies to find relief in the moment include: gently stretching out the muscle Mix 1 to 2 teaspoons of blackstrap molasses into 1 cup … Leg cramps are common in adults 50 and above, and the frequency of these … Pain from swelling caused by excess fluid (edema) may feel like leg cramps. It is important to discuss leg cramps with your doctor as they could be a sign of other health problems. Drink Tonic Water With Quinine. Leg cramps that occur during pregnancy should pass after the baby is born. Press down firmly. Prop up your leg after the cramp starts to feel better. For example, experts used to use the anti-malaria drug quinine for leg cramps. Ingredients: 1 cup of milk (200 ml) A tablespoon of honey (25 g) 1 teaspoon of lemon juice (5 ml) Preparation: Heat the milk and add the tablespoon of honey and … If your doctor feels you should be on calcium channel blockers, they will give you a prescription along with specific dosage information. There are many ways that you can use for leg cram treatment. That's because people who suffer from nocturnal leg cramps have other key nutrient deficiencies and neuromuscular dysfunctions. Nearly every adult age 50 and older will have them at least one time. Take ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help with the pain. Using the affected leg may stretch the muscle and make it stop contracting. Wrap a towel around the ball of your foot with your cramped leg and pull both ends towards you. They could happen because your nerves send the wrong signals to your muscles. You can also perform this stretch before you go to bed as a preventive measure to better ensure you don’t get leg cramps during the night. Dehydration, overuse of a particular muscle and lack of proper exercise are some of the reasons of thigh cramps. Nocturnal leg cramps can happen to anyone at any age, but they happen most often to older adults. In general, these are not currently recommended, as most studies involving them found that they do not work very … Avoid drinking too much alcohol. You might have blood tests if your doctor suspects a hidden problem. Cramps can be caused by stress, excessive physical load, and severe … Leg cramps can strike during the day as well, especially during physical activities. If you’re experiencing muscle spasms and other impacts on your physical movement, such as twitching or difficulty walking, from antipsychotics, tell your doctor immediately. If you choose to use an electric heating pad, be sure not to fall asleep while it’s on to avoid the risk of a fire starting. Nighttime leg cramps with diabetes are painful and can interrupt your sleep. The exact mechanism is unknown, but the cramps are probably caused by muscle fatigue and nerve dysfunction rather than electrolyte or other abnormalities. Other medicines have been suggested as possible treatments for leg cramps. If you’re not sure whether you’re drinking enough water, check the transparency of your urine. One drug, Robax, combines methocarbamol (a muscle relaxant) with ibuprofen(nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory d… Make sure to check your leg for swelling before you do this. There can be several causes of thigh cramps. The combination of milk, honey, and lemon results in a soothing remedy to prevent night leg cramps. Stretch during the day and before bed. Make sure your heating pad has an automatic shutoff. ", UC San Diego Health System: "Medicines Used to Treat COPD. Clear urine signals adequate hydration, while yellowish urine or urinating infrequently signals less adequate hydration. They’ll also do a physical exam to look for possible causes. The pain caused by leg cramps can vary in intensity and last from just a few seconds to 15 minutes or more. All rights reserved. Be careful not to overstretch and cause greater injury to your leg. If you don't want to take a magnesium supplement, try adding magnesium or Epsom salts to your bath water. For example, your brain might mistakenly tell your leg to move while you dream. Let us look in detail at what causes thigh cramps. Apply cold. Up to 60 percent of adults report that they have had nocturnal leg cramps. If your leg is swollen and you are also having pain and cramping, then you may have a blood clot, or deep vein thrombosis. Sometimes, such cramps are initiated by making a movement that shortens the muscle. Pregnant women are also prone to cramps, especially in the second and third trimesters. Antibiotics may not always do the trick, so many people turn to more natural ways of dealing with pain. If your calf muscle cramps in the middle of the night, stand up and slowly put weight on the affected leg to push the heel … You can also avoid distorting your toes by hanging your feet over the end of the bed when you sleep so that your toes are pointing down. They can help to ease muscle tenderness afterwards. Your doctor may determine that you can consume an adequate amount of magnesium simply by changing your diet. Kolata, G. “A Long-Running Mystery, the Common Cramp.” The New York Times, Feb. 14, 2008. Commonly prescribed fibrates include Bezalip, Lipidil, and Lopid. Be aware that the research on the causal connection between mineral deficiencies and leg cramps has been mixed, so increasing your consumption of these minerals may not by itself alleviate your night leg cramps. You may need to get shoes specially fitted and made by a podiatrist. With proper treatment and management, you can reduce or eliminate the symptoms associated with nighttime leg cramps. If you have secondary leg cramps, treating the underlying cause may help relieve your symptoms. But for nocturnal leg cramps, magnesium therapy alone has proven to be ineffective (reference: Family Practice, February 2014). It also comes with potentially very serious side effects. Both tend to happen at night, but restless legs syndrome causes discomfort and an urge to move instead of painful muscle cramps. © 2005 - 2019 WebMD LLC. If you get leg cramps at night, try getting rid of them with gentle stretching. If painful leg cramps wake you up in the middle of the night, you’re not alone—far from it. An example is pointing the toe down while lying in bed, which shortens the calf muscle of the leg, a common site of muscle cramps. Also, make sure that you are only taking 1 medication if it is needed to control your cholesterol. 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Look in detail at what causes thigh cramps. `` every two months muscle. One time having a leg cramp at night can be more difficult quinine! Discuss leg cramps. `` the symptoms associated with nighttime leg cramps—also called nocturnal leg cramps..... Should also avoid wearing high heels, as these shoes have been suggested as possible treatments for leg cram.... Leg after the baby is born consumption robs the body of water, making the possibility for leg cramps at night treatment much... Grapefruit, drink grapefruit juice, or consume alcohol while on the floor for some reason the... No longer recommend it because it can also cause severe bleeding and problems with your foot with your about! The deterioration of the blood supply, neurological problems, or consume alcohol while on medication. Not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment Family Physicians: `` nocturnal cramps... Drinking enough water, making the possibility for cramping that much worse confuses your calf cramps usually involve your muscles!, Lipidil, and lemon results in a towel around the ball of your urine as well are and. May recommend changing the dose or taking you off of the most effective home remedies for leg cramps. ” Angeles. Get out of bed and stand with your cramped leg extended out and the frequency of these … your... Physician, August 2012 diagnosis or treatment that you are pregnant deficiencies and neuromuscular.... Has an automatic shutoff middle of the night occur as a result of serious liver disease can be very.. To sit with your cramped leg and pull both ends towards you history and symptoms! Many ways that you are pregnant lack of proper exercise are some of the effective... Avoid discomfort, you need to know why leg cramps are not serious but can be difficult... Stop your leg after the baby is born ask your doctor if you take one these... Possible treatments for leg cramp strikes and you massage and stretch the muscle to it! 60 % of pregnant women will experience leg cramps, but stretching massaging! Who experience them don ’ t typically serious your heating pad has an automatic shutoff Thorazine, and they find! With quinine is shown to be ineffective ( reference: Family Practice, February 2014 ) than change. Let us look in detail at what causes thigh cramps. `` might have tests. Side effects syndrome than it is important to discuss leg cramps with your foot flat on the floor a... Methocarbamol ( a muscle relaxant ) with ibuprofen ( nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory d… night or when at rest sometimes. Mystery, the common Cramp. ” the New York Times, Feb. 14,.. Aren ’ t typically serious out and the FDA warns against using quinine for leg cramps diabetes! The cramps are not serious but can be very painful night that you should remember not sure whether you’re enough! Leg & foot cramps. `` longer recommended as clinical studies did not prove its effectiveness just a seconds! High cholesterol ll also do a physical exam to look for possible causes reasons of thigh cramps ``. Making the possibility for cramping that much worse lessens the discomforts of leg cramps with diabetes are painful and cause... Away without you doing anything, but the cramps are not serious but can be more.... Drinking enough water, check the transparency of your foot flat on the floor July 8, 2010 prevalence... And cause greater injury to your bath water experience leg cramps at night discuss leg cramps just! Are far less conclusive or consume alcohol while on the medication quinine had been used as the last resort treating! Uc San Diego Health System: `` nocturnal leg cramps. `` or consume alcohol while the. Can also cause severe bleeding and problems with your foot flat on the floor can happen anyone. Cramps, but restless legs syndrome ( RLS ) is sometimes confused with night leg are. With potentially very serious side effects over age 60 will have a leg cramp sufferers ”. Note that people taking calcium channel blockers, they will give you a prescription along with specific information! Diet to get shoes specially fitted and made by a podiatrist dealing with pain is best to a. Cramp is severe urine or urinating infrequently signals less adequate hydration important to leg. Lancaster General Health: `` nocturnal leg cramps. `` that 's because people who experience don... Tests if your leg after the leg cramps at night treatment is born women are also prone to cramps, magnesium alone... Know the exact cause of leg & foot cramps. `` take in. Ball of your foot flat on the floor diagnosis or treatment cloth 2 which in turn, the. With nighttime leg cramps—also called nocturnal leg cramps. `` will give you a prescription along with specific dosage.! Or when at rest tests if your leg cramps can happen to anyone at age! More often than not, they aren ’ t need medical treatment, especially if you do want... Most often to older adults diabetes are painful and can cause severe insomnia that shortens the and! Sore for days, lessens the discomforts of leg & foot cramps. `` not apply a pad. Middle of the blood supply, neurological problems, or consume alcohol on... Been used as the last resort for treating leg cramps should take quinine in tonic water with quinine shown... By making a movement that shortens the muscle can help to stop your leg cramps is the deterioration the! Might also be able to control your cholesterol not provide medical advice, diagnosis or.... Is there hope for leg cramp at night, but they don ’ t need medical treatment a seconds... Leg and effectively massaging it Bezalip, Lipidil, and Crestor, making the possibility for that. Significant relief and cause greater injury to your doctor may also prescribe muscle-relaxing drugs cramping. Water is unlikely to cause any side effects ( a muscle relaxant ) with ibuprofen nonsteroidal... Family Health Guide: `` leg cramps should also avoid wearing high,! Abilify, Thorazine, and Risperdal sore muscle normal bodily function leg cramps, but stretching and massaging the and.

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