Undoubtedly one of the most frequent and painful discomforts that we would always like to prevent is muscle cramps, especially at night. Therefore, we tell you why cramps occur and how to avoid their development.
Possible causes of muscle cramps
A muscle cramp is a sudden, involuntary contraction of one or more muscles in our body that is often accompanied by intense pain and can temporarily prevent the use of the affected muscle.
Although in many cases the exact cause of a muscle cramp is not known, there are many factors that contribute to its development:
- Sustained muscle tension or prolonged stretching of a muscle.
- Excessive use of a specific muscle area.
- Holding a specific position for a long time.
- Lack of oxygen during physical exertion.
- Accumulation of sodium or calcium (electrolytes).
- Possible diseases that reduce calcium levels or impede proper blood circulation, as well as pathologies that put pressure on nerves.
Regardless of the cause, we should know that if we suffer repeated muscle cramps, it is advisable to consult a health professional to help us to reverse or reduce their presence.
How to prevent the development of cramps
Due to the intense pain that muscle cramps can cause and also to the impossibility of moving naturally, it is always advisable to prevent their development.
To do so, it is essential to maintain adequate body hydration, that is, to drink water and promote its balance with electrolytes such as calcium, sodium, or potassium, since a reduction of potassium can cause cramps as well as excesses or deficits of calcium.
On the other hand, it is very useful to avoid overtraining and always stretch our muscles to prevent prolonged contraction and shortening.
A proper warm-up or warm-down is also helpful to prevent muscle cramps, but if they still occur, it is helpful to change position or stop straining the affected muscle so that the spasm gradually subsides.
Muscle cramps are a frequent problem, very annoying and even painful, therefore, whenever we can, we recommend preventing their development through proper training and a diet that complements it.