Leg Cramps While Sleeping
The different muscles of our body are an indispensable element for the function of our locomotor system. These work by contracting the thousands of elastic fibers that make them, which in turn is regulated by the nervous system through electrical impulses. Under certain circumstances, these impulses can be involuntary and constant, producing a strong contraction of a certain muscle, which is known as cramp, and are usually related to pain and last from a few seconds to several minutes. These muscle contractions are more frequent in the legs, especially in the calf area and there is a possibility that it appears while you sleep, causing a disturbance in your sleep because of the pain. You may be frightened by the fact that you wake up from this contraction, so we will explain: Why You Have Leg Cramps While Sleeping?
What Are Muscle Cramps?
Muscle cramps appear after the contraction or tension of a muscle, with no intention of doing so and difficult to relax. The person with cramps claims to have the muscle hard or bulging and this can encompass the entire muscle, several muscles or just part of one.
This type of contraction is involuntary and generates a lot of pain, a consequence of tension. They affect all people in general, but it is more frequent in those of advanced ages, embrazadas or athletes.
The most common areas in which they occur are in the calf and the front or back of the thigh, but can also occur in the feet, hands, arms and abdomen.
Among its symptoms are pain and spasms, disappearing within a few seconds or lasting for several minutes. Sensitivity may be present within 24 hours.
Why do you have legs cramps while sleeping?
The causes that cause muscle cramp are nonspecific, since its origin has been associated with a number of factors that must be taken into account. Despite being a common condition, if it is very frequent it is necessary to know what the triggering factors may be, since its appearance should not be ignored. Nightly leg cramps have been associated with:
A deficiency of foods rich in calcium, potassium or magnesium: this deficiency can bring with it a lack of electrolytes, which are necessary elements for the metabolism of the muscles and that if they are not present in blood, they can trigger cramps in the legs while you sleep .
Disorders in the circulation: if you adopt positions that prevent an adequate blood supply, you can favor the appearance of cramps. Cramps may also appear in the legs, especially at night in people with vascular diseases, for example, in those suffering from varicose veins or thrombosis.
Nervous diseases: people who suffer from neurological disorders, such as polyneuropathy, which affects a large number of nerves and trigger cramps in the legs when sleeping.
Overweight: This is because an overweight person requires more work and, as a result, there is more wear and tear on the muscles. As a result of this wear appear cramps in the legs.
Sportsmen:They appear in the athletes because they make an excessive muscular effort, being more prone to generate cramps.
Stand or sit in the same position for an extended period of time.
Administration of some drugs such as birth control, diuretics, antipsychotics or steroids can cause leg cramps as a side effect.
Tips to Avoid Leg Cramps
These spasms are more common than you think, especially while sleeping and do not cause any harm; however, it is no mystery to anyone that these cramps are extremely annoying and painful, so you should try to avoid them. If you present them with numerous regularity, we will give you a series of tips that you can follow to avoid them:
- Experts advise sleeping with your toes up, since if stretched, you generate more tension in the area of the leg.
- Moisturize properly during the day.
- Eat foods that contain the nutrients needed to prevent leg cramps.
- Do stretch before bed because it decreases the frequency of these spasms.
- If you have already got up and have the cramp, you have to reverse it, to do this, stretch the affected muscle or walk a little. You can also place cold or hot compresses on the affected leg because the temperature change reverses the cramp.
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