How To Get Rid Of a Charlie Horse, Naturally?
Exercise is a great way to calm cramped and constricted muscles as well as prevent frequent re-occurrences of muscle cramps in future. Mild exercise before bedtime could save from leg cramps at the middle of the night. Some of the exercises you can do to prevent and get rid of Charlie horses are treadmill, stationary bikes, jump roping, squats, standing straight on tippy toes and walking around on heels for few minutes.
Keep well hydrated
Dehydration is a major cause of Charlie horses, especially in athletes. When our body is dehydrated, there is a decrease in the quantity of fluids outside the cells which causes the muscles to twitch leading to muscle cramps. Keeping well hydrated is therefore necessary to avoid its occurrences as well as to get rid of already experiencing episodes of muscle cramps. Try incorporate at least 8 glasses of water every day. Also, drink fresh fruit juices and electrolyte drinks which are particularly good to keep muscle cramps at bay.
Heat packs can bring instant relief from episodes of Charlie horses. It works by relaxing the stiff or contracted muscle and by improving the blood circulation to the sore muscle.
Apply heat pack to the contracted muscle until the muscle cramps are over. If you don’t have a heat pack a hot water bottle can be used.
Massage is yet another effective remedy to ease a cramped muscle, as well as reduce the pressure and pain. During an episode of a Charlie horse, massage the painful muscle and the area surrounding the pain with your thumb, exerting mild to medium pressure in a circular motion. Do this for few minutes until the cramp is gone.
Lavender is an all-purpose oil. From treating skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, acne, dry and cracked skin to providing instant relief form cramps and spasms, you can trust lavender oil. Mix 2-3 drops of lavender essential oil with equal amount of castor oil and gently rub it on the affected muscle.
Peppermint essential oil
Peppermint essential oil is super great when it comes to providing instant relief from pain and discomfort. The excellent antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties of peppermint fight off pain, ache and discomfort of cramped and contracted muscles within few seconds like a magic. Just dilute with a carrier oil like coconut or sweet almond and massage over the affected muscle for few seconds, you will be surprised by the wonderful relief it provides.
Stretching is a good way to ease the contracted muscle which helps stop the cramp immediately. Gently flexing a muscle and then let it relax, makes it easier to stretch the muscle and stretch out a cramp. Stretching also increases the blood flow to the area which also ease the cramp. Stretching a bit before bedtime is an effective way to get rid of Charlie horse at night. Some of the effective ways to stretch are:
Sit, stand or lay on the ground and extend the affected leg and stretch. The best way to do is to stretch the cramped or contracted muscle and hold it for a minute.
Another great way to stretch, particularly to relieve the most commonly experienced, calf cramp.
Sit up in bed or carpet. Bend your leg to reach down the sole of your foot, the area between the ball of the foot and where the toes begin. Place your thumb in the corresponding spot on the top of the foot.
Using your fingers, gently press your foot down. Count to five and stop, then relax for a few seconds (for a count of five). Now straight your calf for a count of five. Wait for 5 seconds and repeat the exercise again. Keep doing this stretching exercise until the cramp is gone.
To get relief form a cramp in your hamstring, the muscle on the back of the thigh, do this stretching exercise. Sit down with the foot of the cramped leg on the floor. Place the other foot on top of cramped foot. Now pull up with the lower foot with about 10 percent of your strength. Then slowly straighten out the leg, get up and move around a bit.
Diuretics deplete body of fluids and sodium, which can lead to episodes of Charlie horses. Diuretics in the form of caffeine and alcohol, as well as potent diuretics in the form of medications can cause or induce muscle cramps. Therefore it is necessary to cut or limit diuretic in the form of excessive caffeine and alcohol from your diet.