Many people experience night time cramps and even though it's not a health endangering condition it can be quite uncomfortable and painful. Nighttime cramps are actually involuntary contractions in the upper leg, calf and feet and are not to be confused with restless leg syndrome. Restless leg syndrome isn't painful and allows you to move the leg and hip when it strikes but nighttime cramps can last a few seconds up to a couple of minutes and your leg feels completely paralyzed during the occurrence. The causes of this unpleasant condition are vague and vary from nutrients deficiencies to pregnancy and sedentary lifestyle. However even though the cause is unknown there are a few tips and tricks that can help you overcome the situation and possibly even prevent future occurrences.
The following list can help you prevent and treat nighttime cramps so if you suffer from them try out some of them and see which ones work for you:
Don't sit or stand for prolonged periods of time. Try walking more, move throughout the day and start some light physical activity, it should improve the condition.
If you wake up in the middle of the night with cramps try pulling the affected muscle to relax it.
Drink plenty of water
You need to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water if you want to prevent muscle cramps.
Massage or acupuncture
Acupuncture and deep tissue massage can have quite a beneficial effect against cramps so try them out if you experience nighttime cramps often, it should reduce their occurrence.
Up your magnesium intake
Magnesium is a crucial vitamin when it comes to muscles and connective tissue so if you suffer from nighttime cramps you need to increase your magnesium intake.
Food sources rich in magnesium include dry fruits, plums, seeds, avocados and nuts so introduce them to your diet in higher amounts. You can also prepare homemade magnesium oil and massage your muscles with it before going to bed. Combine half a cup of boiling water and half a cup of magnesium oil, let it simmer until the liquid is reduced and set it aside to cool off. Transfer the oil in a spray bottle and use it as suggested.
Epsom salt baths
Epsom salt is rich in magnesium and it can help relax your muscles and prevent cramps. Prepare a hot bath with Epsom salts and soak in it for a bit.
For instant relief, whenever a muscle cramp wakes you up in the night start massaging the affected muscle to relax it and boost circulation.