How to Deal with Annoying Night Calf Muscle Cramps NOW
Calf muscle cramps
Calf muscle cramps belong to a group of pathologies called myoclonus. This also includes spasms of the thigh muscles. In this case, there is a spasm of the muscles in the legs and there is no loss of consciousness. This phenomenon is caused by a violation in the extrapyramidal system of the brain, provoked by a decrease in the level of calcium in the blood and other concomitant pathologies.
Convulsions are involuntary, spontaneously arising contractions of certain muscles (one or a group), provoked by brain impulses.
In some cases, seizures are a sign of serious pathologies not only in the central nervous system, but also in other organs and systems of the human body.
Often, doctors are afraid of such a symptom, since it is extremely difficult to stop convulsive syndrome.
Complications provoked by convulsions sometimes entail permanent disability. In cases where this muscle spasm occurs rarely (once every few months), this may be a symptom of the disease. The occurrence of seizures should be the reason for visiting a neurologist, since various much more serious diagnoses can be hidden behind this pathology. Quite often, this symptom demonstrates the severity of the disease.
So, for example, during pregnancy, seizures are a sign of severe toxic brain damage (eclampsia). Frequent convulsive attacks in children can be a harbinger of epilepsy.
Causes of seizures
Reasons for convulsions:
- Hypoxia - lack of oxygen in the body as a whole and in the spasmodic organ, in particular;
- Anatomical malformations of the brain;
- Infections of brain tissue and its membranes (meningitis, encephalitis, etc.);
- Lack of potassium, calcium, magnesium, blood glucose;
- ARVI and flu or pneumonia, as their complication;
- Cranial birth injury in newborns or hypoxia during labor;
- Metabolic diseases in children (phenylketonuria);
- TBI (in case of accidents, attacks, etc.);
- Malignant and benign neoplasms of the brain;
- Fever (high temperature);
- Toxicosis during pregnancy;
- Diseases causing degeneration of nerve tissues (multiple sclerosis, encephalomyelitis);
- Acute drug poisoning;
- Violation of water-salt metabolism (usually occurs with dehydration).
The factor of hereditary predisposition plays an important role in the occurrence of a convulsive attackdisposition. It has been proven that people whose relatives have suffered from seizures have a very high risk of such seizures.
So, in the presence of a certain predisposition, loud rhythmic sounds and bright light, especially sharp flashes or flashes, can cause seizures. Usually such attacks are provoked by the atmosphere of nightclubs.
Excessive agitation, prolonged stressful conditions, electrolyte disturbances and drug use are also provoking factors.
Types of seizures
Convulsive attacks are generalized and partial. Tonic-clonic seizures occur spontaneously, beginning with loss of consciousness, dilated pupils. In the phase of tonic spasms, lasting up to a minute, all the muscles of the skeleton are overstrained, the eyes roll up.
This is followed by a period of clonic seizures lasting about 40 seconds, when skeletal muscle convulsions alternate with periods of relaxation.
The attack usually ends with a coma, turning into sleep or stunnedness. After such a convulsive seizure, a person's mouth produces foam mixed with blood.
Myoclonic seizures are observed mainly in children and adolescents. The attack involves either all skeletal muscles or the muscles of the face and fingers.
Partial seizures do not cause loss of consciousness. Single clonic seizures are characteristic, involving the muscles of the feet, hands or face in the pathological process.
The causes of seizures of the calf muscles, like all myoclonic seizures, are low calcium levels and the presence of concomitant pathologies.
So, for example, the occurrence of seizures in cold water is associated with a sharp narrowing of blood vessels, when exposed to low temperatures, and physical muscle strain. Very often brings legs together in cold water in people with spinal pathologies and low calcium levels.
Nocturnal painful cramps of the calf muscles are provoked by the transition from one position to another, and the causes of such a painful spasm lie in the spontaneous overstrain of the leg muscles.
For women, nocturnal cramps of the calf muscles are characteristic with the development of varicose veins or with a deficiency of calcium in the blood serum. In addition, cramps of the calf muscles that occur in women before bedtime during pregnancy can be caused by a violation of mineral metabolism.
Namely: if the diet of the expectant mother lacks the necessary minerals for her and the baby, or, due to the oddities arising during pregnancy, the woman refuses this or that group of products, there is a deficiency of minerals and trace elements. In addition, vomiting during pregnancy and improper or uncontrolled intake of diuretics to eliminate leg edema also entail dehydration, the consequence of which is a violation of mineral metabolism in the body. All this leads to a deficiency of potassium, calcium,magnesium and vitamin B6.
Treatment of seizures is not about training the calf muscles (although sometimes it is necessary), but about eliminating the pathology that initiates the onset of seizures in your body.
So, if this is a violation of mineral metabolism, then the diet should be changed in the direction of increasing the consumption of essential minerals. If dehydration and imbalance of blood electrolytes are expressed by a serious condition of the patient, then the replacement of the missing elements is carried out by infusion of special drugs.
In case of developing varicose veins, it is necessary to treat the vessels of the venous bed.
Such a common method of eliminating seizures, such as pricking with a needle, is quite effective, but only a trained person should perform it. You need to know exactly where to prick, how and it is imperative to disinfect the needle beforehand, otherwise you risk eliminating the spasm, but injecting an infection.
In order to avoid the loss of potassium and magnesium ions, diuretics are used only with drugs that replace the loss of these ions, or the doctor will select for you gentle means that do not cause the loss of these trace elements.
Prevention of seizures is necessary to prevent the occurrence of another seizure. Massage works well because it warms up all the muscles, increasing blood flow in them.
Gym exercises help to strengthen the leg muscles. It is necessary to add vegetables, dairy products (cottage cheese, sour cream, kefir), fruits, oatmeal to the diet, and of course - liver.
Special preparations containing calcium and vitamin D help increase the level of calcium in the blood, reduce neuromuscular excitability and, as a result, convulsive readiness. But only a doctor should prescribe such drugs.
If you suffer from nocturnal cramps in the calf muscles or convulsive attacks of other muscles, consult a neurologist immediately, as this may be a symptom of a serious pathology in the body and delaying its treatment can entail serious consequences.
In addition to visiting your doctor, eat right, exercise and be healthy!