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How do I Choose the Best Muscle Spasm Treatments?

By Thomma Grindstaff
Updated May 17, 2024
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Muscle spasms occur when muscles themselves have been injured, when there has been injury to underlying structures such as ligaments, or when disease or infection is present. There are many muscle spasm treatments to choose from, depending on the severity of your condition. If your muscle spasms are intermittent, then a combination of over-the-counter pain medication, stretching, and regular exercise may help. If your muscle spasms are chronic, however, you should seek treatment from a medical professional.

In most cases, muscle spasm treatments can be done at home, and one of the best ways is by gentle stretching. Muscle spasms occur when muscles painfully contract, so pulling on your muscle with easy stretches can provide relief. When you stretch the affected area, blood flow is improved, which will contribute to reducing your discomfort. Over-the-counter medications like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) can help lessen the pain of muscle spasms. If you suffer from stomach ulcers, bleeding problems, or liver disease, talk to your doctor before using NSAIDS.

One of the simplest muscle spasm treatments is taking a hot shower. This promotes circulation and helps relax your muscles and connective tissues. Massage is also a good remedy for muscle spasm since, like stretching and hot showers, it increases blood flow to the affected area.

Muscle relaxants are another alternative for muscle spasm relief, but they can cause sedation as a side effect. Narcotics, available only by prescription, will relieve your pain, but your doctor will usually only prescribe them for a few days at a time. Cortisone injections are one of the most effective muscle spasm treatments, but they are intended for short term use only because of their potential side effects.

If your muscle spasms occur more than three times a week or persist longer than one week, you should see your doctor for evaluation. Chronic muscle spasms can indicate serious conditions such as blood clotting or restricted blood flow. If serious conditions are ruled out, then you might want to consider physical therapy for your muscle spasms. Physical therapy can help build up weakened or injured areas of your body that might be responsible for the muscle spasms.

The best muscle spasm treatments are those of prevention. Keep muscle spasms from occurring in the first place by staying well-hydrated and preventing injury by engaging in thorough stretching before you exercise. If you must participate in regular, intense physical activity as part of your job, remember to take frequent breaks. Since some muscle spasms are the result of nutritional deficiency, you may be able to prevent them from occurring by eating a healthy diet and getting all of the vitamins and minerals you need.

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