Muscle cramps are experienced by almost everyone at some point in their lives, especially those who participate in sports. Different muscle groups can be affected by these sudden, involuntary contractions. The muscles that are most commonly affected by this often-painful problem are the muscles in the front and back of the thigh and back of the lower leg. Muscle cramps may also affect the hands and feet, arms and abdominal wall.
The most common symptom of muscle cramps is intense, sharp pain, and can also come with soreness, swelling and inflammation. The exact cause of most muscle cramps is not known but it often occurs after the overuse of muscles while engaging in some type of physical activity like exercise. A few other causes include poor circulation, dehydration, muscle injuries and deficiency of a mineral such as potassium, magnesium or calcium.
Best Natural Treatments for Muscle Cramps
No matter what causes your muscle cramps, there is good news as you can relieve the pain with many effective home remedies, including:
When it comes to muscles cramps, one of the best natural remedies is clove oil. It has anti-inflammatory properties that make it extremely effective in the swelling and inflammation that comes with muscle cramps. It also has anesthetic properties which is helpful for alleviating the pain. If you are looking for quick and long-lasting relief from muscle cramps, you should definitely try using clove oil.
How to Use:
- Heat up a bit of clove oil and then let it cool until warm.
- Apply the oil on the affected area and massage for 5 minutes using firm strokes.
- If you need to, repeat the process.
- Use this remedy until the muscle cramp is completely gone.
You can do more with rosemary than add flavor to dishes. It is a great home remedy for muscle cramps as it has anti-inflammatory properties that can help in easing inflamed muscle tissue and reducing pain and soreness. Rosemary also has warming and soothing effect that promotes relaxation. Because this herb is easily absorbed through the skin, it can also speed up the recovery time from muscle cramps.
How to Use:
- Put 1 ounce of rosemary leaves in a 1-pint jar.
- Fill the jar with boiling water, cover and leave it to steep for 30 minutes.
- Soak a soft, clean washcloth in the warm solution and place it on the affected area.
- Leave the washcloth on for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Once the pain is alleviated, follow it with a cold compress.
- Another superb remedy is to add 1 or 2 teaspoons of dried rosemary to 1 cup of hot water.
- Let it steep for 10 minutes or so and then strain it.
- Drink this rosemary tea 2 to 3 times a day to get rid of muscle cramps.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Have you noticed that apple cider vinegar is a common ingredient in home remedies for a wide range of conditions, from acne and other skin problems to digestive issues? Another problem that it can help relieve is muscle cramps. One of the most common causes of frequent muscle cramps is low potassium. Raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar is rich in potassium which is why it works wonders for this problem. It also contains several nutrients that help in controlling the balance of fluids in the body, which then prevents dehydration.
How to Use:
- Mix 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in 1 glass of warm water.
- Drink this solution once a day to keep muscle cramps away.
- To prevent leg cramps that occur during the night, mix 1 teaspoon each of apple cider vinegar and honey and 1 tablespoon of calcium lactate in ½ glass of warm water.
- Drink this mixture every night about 30 minutes before you go to bed.
Another excellent home remedy for relieving muscle cramps is Epsom salt. It contains magnesium which promotes healing and relaxation. It is an effective natural treatment for different types of pain caused by a number of conditions. When you want to ease muscle cramps and relax your body, Epsom salt is a great option.
How to Use:
- Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to a bathtub filled with warm water.
- Soak and relax in the bath for 20 minutes.
- All you need to do is soak in this bath once to get great results. However, if you need to, you can use this remedy again the next day.
Note: Keep in mind that you should not use Epsom salt if you suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure or heart problems.
After the pain has improved, you can use a cold compress on your sore muscles to completely eliminate a muscle cramp. The cold temperature from the compress helps in numbing the pain, reducing inflammation as well as relaxing the cramped up muscle. Plus, a cold compress will constrict the blood vessels, thereby reducing soreness.
How to Use:
- Take a handful of ice cubes and wrap in a soft, thin cloth or towel.
- Place it on the affected area for 15 minutes or so at a time.
- Repeat every 2 hours for 1 to 2 days.
- Taking a cold shower will also relax sore muscles after a muscle cramp. Take one as and when you need to.
If calcium or potassium deficiency is causing your muscle cramps, then you should use blackstrap molasses – it will work wonders in providing relief as well as preventing the problem. It is a good source of both these minerals, making it great for maintaining strong muscles. This in turn will help in preventing muscle cramps.
How to Use:
- Mix 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses in 1 glass of warm milk or water.
- Drink the mixture and it will relieve the pain in just a few minutes.
- You can drink this mixture once more if you need to.
- You can also prevent calcium and potassium deficiency by drinking this solution on a regular basis.
Muscle cramps can be extremely painful and leave you feeling miserable. With these effective home remedies, you can treat the problem to get relief and prevent it from recurring. If you suffer from muscle cramps, give these remedies a try – they will definitely provide the relief you are looking for.