Toe / Foot Cramps
Try extending your heel to stretch the muscle and bring your toes towards you. This can bring a bit of quick relief. If you have someone to help you, sit down, hold your leg out straight, and have them push your toes toward your knee.
Home remedies for leg cramps.
Cramps at night. I used to be awakened by major leg and foot cramps. I had heard that putting a bar of soap in bed would solve the problem – sounded utterly ridiculous. The cramps got worse.
We were visiting my aunt and she mentioned that she knew people who were helped by a bar of soap in bed. I was so worried about the pain that I didn’t want to go to sleep. So I tried it. IT WORKED.
Told a friend about this ridiculous thing that had helped me. She emailed me a few days later to tell me “IT WORKED”. I think any bar of soap works.
Pinch away the pain. Ready for instant relief? Try this acupressure technique. Grab your upper lip between your thumb and index finger, and squeeze for about 30 seconds.
“It’s hard to believe, but it works great,” says Patrice Morency, a sports injury management specialist in Portland, Oregon, who works with Olympic hopefuls. Although there’s no definite explanation for why acupressure works, it’s a pain relief technique many athletes have found to be effective.
Let your fingers do the massaging. You can use the direct approach, too: Grab the cramping muscle tightly, pushing your fingertips deep into the cramp for about 10 to 15 seconds, then release. You can repeat as often as necessary to relieve the cramp, says Morency.
Contract and relax. Contracting any muscle that opposes a cramping muscle force the cramped one to relax, says Morency. When you suffer a severe leg cramp in the calf muscle, for example, flex your shin muscle (which opposes your calf muscle) by pulling your toes toward your knee.
Better yet, while you’re pulling your toes up, have a friend gently press the top of your foot the other way to provide resistance, says Morency. That maxes out the tension on your shin muscle, which should cause the cramped calf to release.
Water your pain. Drinking a cup of water (about eight ounces) every 20 minutes before, during and after exercise will help keep your system from dehydrating. And when you prevent dehydration, you prevent cramping, says Dr. Hersh.
Give your electrolyte balance a boost. “People who are maintaining their weight and seem to be well hydrated but are getting recurrent cramping may have an electrolyte imbalance — too little sodium or potassium in the blood,” says Dr. Hersh. He recommends any sports drink that replenishes sodium or potassium. “But you should probably have a blood test to make certain that’s the problem,” Dr. Hersh adds.
Cramps and Spasms
As children, we learned that it is important to refrain from exercising soon after a meal to avoid cramps and spasms. If we don’t allow the necessary digestive functions to take place, our bodies fight back with cramps and spasms. They are your body’s message to you to stop your game or exercise.
Your body instructs you. If you don’t listen, you lose. So please, the next time you gulp your food before a game, think again. Also, if you plan to exercise after a strenuous workday, be careful because your muscles may be cold and tired which is an invitation to the ball of knots cramping effect of the legs and feet.
In most cases, cramps are not harmful to your body even though you may feel like screaming with pain. If you get a leg, foot or toe cramp, massage the area lightly to increase blood circulation and muscle relaxation.
Apply a warm compress. An extract of the botanical, Arnica montana (found in your local health food store) rubbed onto the area of pain may provide a great deal of relief. Also, soaking your feet in warm water and Epsom salts is a common remedy you may want to try.
In most cases, 400 I.U. of Vitamin E per day may relieve muscular cramping. Check the ingredients of Vitamin E; d’ alpha-tocopherol is the natural form, while dl’ alpha tocopheryl is synthetic and does not have the beneficial absorption quality or action of the natural form.
A word of advice, Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin and should not be taken in daily doses of more than 600 I.U. unless you do so with the guidance of a nutritionally oriented doctor.