Get Relief from Charlie Horse Pain Fast!
If you've ever had a severe cramp of a muscle such as a Charlie horse, you know how devastatingly painful it can be. The spasm of the tightening of any muscle that creates a literal knot can make you want to scream in agony. Screaming can prolong the pain in the long run and that's not what you want.
The first time you experience this pain, you may not know what it is or why you're having it. That no doubt affects how you deal with it. You want to know what to do to end it NOW and I agree! These are painful and seem like they're lasting hours. Here's what I've done when I had them and what I recommend to my patients in the nursing home where I work.
There are several things you can and should do as soon as you recognize that you are having a Charlie horse. Follow these tips to stop Charlie horse pain almost immediately.
Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Things You'll Need:
Relax during charlie horse pain
This is probably the hardest thing to do while you're starting to have a Charlie horse. You want to scream with pain but, that will cause a delay in relief and can actually make it worse. Stay calm for the fastest relief of pain.
Apply pressure slowly to pain
Apply pressure to the cramping area slowly. Slowly stand if you're lying down. Gently press your foot to the ground if the Charlie horse pain is in the foot. The same rule applies to other areas affected by cramping pain, ie. If the pain is in the neck, use your hand to apply pressure. This will help to increase the circulation that is lacking and causing the pain.
Focus on deep breathing
While you are trying to relax and hold pressure to the Charlie horse pain affected area, focus on deep breathing. The knot is caused by a spasm and adding at least 10 truly deep breaths will begin to alleviate the discomfort. Oxygen will help to provide the necessary circulation to the muscle to reduce the spasm.
Gently massage the cramped area
After the initial pain begins to subside, gently massage the affected area in small circular motions. This will also help to increase the circulation, reduce the knot and increase oxygen to the cramped area. Continue to take deep breaths while you massage gently until the pain has subsided. It can feel like it's taking hours to get relief but, it's only less than a minute or two usually and you'll begin to feel better.
Add a liquid multivitamin
Once you are able to walk again after the initial pain of a Charlie horse subsides, head to the kitchen. Choose a banana, pumpkin seeds, melons, tomato, milk, cheese, cereal or fresh fruit or fresh vegetable to obtain any missing nutritional ingredients that may have caused the painful cramp to begin with and a signal to you that your body is lacking a certain vitamin. An extra dose of liquid or sublingual vitamins with Vitamin K, potassium, magnesium, calcium and vitamin E every day will also help.
* liquid and sublingual vitamins are preferred to tablets or capsules since they absorb almost instantly once they hit under the tongue area. See my favorite vitamin drink here and below. Take it every day to ensure that you're getting the right vitamins and you'll reduce your chances of getting another one of those awful spasms in the future.
Heat dilates while cold and ice constricts. Since the muscle is already constricted and in spasm, avoid adding ice which will only further constrict this painful muscle. Heat will help to dilate, increase circulation and soothe the painful affected muscle. Try the sunbeam heat pad listed below that I use nightly for fast relief of sore, tired legs that tend to cramp and always after a bout of leg cramps for faster relief.
Rest charlie horse pain
Allow the muscle to return to a state of rest. Lying down afterwards is helpful to naturally stretch out the muscle slowly.
Stretch daily to reduce leg cramps
Stretching and exercise
One exercise that may help to alleviate this cramping pain after the initial discomfort wears off is one of my favorites that I do daily:
*lie down flat, legs extended, keep heels apart and toes touching each other. Now extend the legs as far as possible while maintaining the toes touching each other to fully stretch the calf muscles. Repeat 10 times slowly several times per day to prevent leg cramps.
I hope you'll find relief for your sore, tired, over worked and exhausted muscles that tend to cramp just when you're ready to relax for the day. These are the tips I use and wish you success with getting rid of yours - for good!
Tips & Warnings
Medications can delete effective nutrients in the body so check with your doctor about any medications you need.
Staying calm during pain is the hardest thing to do and the most helpful.
Maintaining a well balanced diet is key to preventing charlie horse leg cramps and to stop a cramping attack in it's tracks.
- For more information check out How to Prevent Charlie Horse Leg Cramps
Liquid multivitamin/minerals for daily health and wellness
Take it not only daily but, during those painful leg cramps for relief
Amazon Price: $22.99 Buy Now
(price as of Jul 13, 2014)
Keep a heating pad on your painful leg cramp for relief
Amazon Price: $17.53 $10.96 Buy Now
(price as of Jul 13, 2014)