A charley horse can be caused by a direct blow or sudden stretch of the muscle, but most of the time they’re caused by strain or fatigue during exercise.
7 Charley Horse Home Remedies
If you have a cramp, these actions may provide relief:
These spasms are marked by uncomfortable muscle contractions. If the contracting muscles don’t relax for several seconds or more, the pain can be severe. Severe charley horses can result in muscle soreness that lasts anywhere from a few hours to a day. This is normal, so long as the pain isn’t prolonged or recurring.
A DVT blood clot can cause a calf cramp that feels a lot like a charley horse. Like leg pain, the cramping sensation with DVT will persist and even worsen with time. It won’t clear up with stretching or walking it off like an ordinary charley horse.
4. Using an Epsom salt bath may also help to relieve pain and possibly help with the prevention of a Charley horse. Epson salt has a high magnesium content.
You probably know that bananas are a good source of potassium. But they’ll also give you magnesium and calcium. That’s three out of four nutrients you need to ease muscle cramps tucked under that yellow peel. No wonder bananas are a popular, quick choice for cramp relief.
Nocturnal Leg Cramp Prevention
Too little potassium, calcium or magnesium in your diet can contribute to leg cramps. Diuretics — medications often prescribed for high blood pressure — also can deplete these minerals.
Magnesium is a widely used remedy for leg cramps.
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The sudden and uncontrollable spasm can often be brief, but it can last for several minutes or up to 10 minutes. For most people, the muscle contracts painfully without lasting problems. For others, however, the cramps can be extremely painful and leave some muscle discomfort for days.
Massage, a bath with Epsom salts, or a heating pad can relax the muscle. To fight pain, use an ice pack or take an over-the-counter medication like ibuprofen or naproxen. In most cases, the charley horse will stop within a few minutes. But if you get them often and for no clear reason, tell your doctor.