Patient Comments: Muscle Cramps - Effective Treatments

What kinds of treatments have been effective for your muscle cramps?

Comment from: bud4linda, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: March 24

I've suffered for years with foot, calf and thigh cramps, especially the inside of my thigh. Here are the things that I have found that work for me. First, I have 2 pair of sneakers, one that I wear far more often. When I wear the other pair, it's guaranteed that I'll have cramps in my feet and thighs. It just took me a while to realize what was happening. I just have to remember not to wear them. The other 2 things that help me are having an extra blanket over my feet. My feet were getting cold and then they would cramp. The other thing is, when my legs start to cramp, I drink a large glass of water. My son is a coach and he says one of the main reasons for leg cramps is dehydration. Once I started listening to him, I've been able to stop a cramp immediately, but I seldom get them now as long as I keep that blanket on my feet and legs. Hope this helps someone.

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Comment from: Anna Mae, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 27

I have a jar of dill pickle juice, as soon as they start I jump up, grab a big glass of water, drink 2 or so inches of pickle juice, start drinking water and walking. It is a very short time until cramps are gone. When I play golf I have my pickle juice and water ready when I go to bed.

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Comment from: Mary, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 27

I have been prone to leg cramps while sleeping. I have found if I can figure out how to stretch the cramped muscle, I get immediate relief. For a cramp in the calf muscle, I get up, put my feet flat on the floor and bend my knees and get immediate release. A cramp in the back of the thigh is very painful and stretching that one is also painful. However, when I stand and straighten my leg until my knee locks, I get immediate release of the cramp.

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Comment from: Sue, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 23

I am 53 years old now and have been having cramps in feet, toes, and inner thigh, and believe me, cramp in my ribs that block every breath out of my lungs (since my early 30s). I have been using salt under my tongue that worked for a while. But since I am on blood pressure medication, cramps became worse and my general physician prescribed quinine and wow, I very rarely have a cramp. I only used it when am experiencing a cramp (have a safety stash for in case). I am also using magnesium and vitamin C daily. I live in South Africa and quinine is available here.

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Comment from: Nazzy, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: December 22

I frequently get a cramping in the upper inside thigh muscles especially after sitting in a hard chair for a long time. My life saver is Tiger Balm, an ointment available at most pharmacies. It takes about a minute or two for the cramp to abate and is gone. It has a strong odor but you get used to it. Also, walk it off if you can.

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Comment from: Lexgirl, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: October 21

Having suffered painful muscle cramps from calves to ankles to feet, or knee to groin and back of knee or buttocks for almost 15 years, I read about taking 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt once in the morning and once before bed. It has brought miraculous relief. I now take only before bedtime, although if I have been overactive and dehydrated during the day, I may still get one during the night. My husband knows to bring me 1/4 tsp sea salt in a small amount of hot water and it literally stops the cramp within 30 seconds. It must be sea salt due to mineral content. Hope this helps someone.

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Comment from: MJ, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: October 15

For those who have tried everything mentioned, I have found that avoiding tannins in food and drink prevent my cramps. Red wine, coffee, dark chocolate, barley, cherries, asparagus, and grapes are some examples. Also herbs such as thyme. Avoiding tannins after noon is especially important.

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Comment from: Daphnia, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: October 10

If I don't drink at least 2 liters of water a day, I get the so-called 'charley horse' cramps in a calf. I immediately get my foot on to something colder than body temperature, e.g., a hardcover book on the floor beside my bed. It works without fail!

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Muscle Cramps - Causes Question: What was the cause of your muscle cramps?
Muscle Cramps - Vitamins and Supplements Question: Which vitamins or supplements did you start taking to relieve muscle cramps?
Muscle Cramps - Prevention Question: What measures have you found effective in preventing muscle cramps?

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