Cramps in legs and feet: What to do?

If in any occupation or profession, one is required to stand or sit for long hours every day, appearance of leg cramps is quite natural.
Representational Image
Representational Image Wallpaperflare [Creative Commons]

Very often you would have heard your relatives and acquaintances complaining of cramps in legs and feet. If after an outdoor walk when they take rest at home, cramps in the leg start. Some people often complain of leg cramps and mild pain during night time. Old and elderly people generally do suffer from problem of leg pain and cramps. Ladies who are obese and overweight frequently suffer from cramps in feet and legs. Sometimes sports person often complain of leg cramps. Not so uncommonly, alcohol addicts suffer from cramps and twisting of muscles of leg and feet. Have you ever thought of why does it happen so?

People who suffer from leg cramps the most?

It has been seen people who are chronic smoker or tobacco-chewer, often complain of tightness and cramps in the leg. Diabetic patients very commonly suffer from leg cramps. Persons who take excess amount of coffee daily do suffer from leg cramps. Obese ladies and elderly people suffer from leg cramps the most. Sometimes excessive fatigue and exhaustive walking lead to leg cramps. People who daily sit long hour in front of T.V or computer, often complain of leg cramps.

Why do leg cramps occur?

The first and the most important reason of leg cramps is the persistent leg congestion due to accumulation and stagnation of oxygen deficient impure blood in the legs. If legs are not decongested on a regular basis, swelling will develop in legs besides cramps.

The second important reason of leg cramp is the lack of proper supply of oxygen rich pure blood to the legs. The third important reason is the deficiency of Vitamin D and calcium in blood that lead to leg cramps. If in any occupation or profession, one is required to stand or sit for long hours every day, appearance of leg cramps is quite natural.

Where to go?

If you suffer from leg cramps, immediately consult an experienced Vascular Surgeon. Get the blood test for vitamin D, calcium and magnesium done. Venous Doppler of leg veins is an important investigation. If you are addicted to tobacco or smoking or suffer from diabetics do get a special investigation called arterial Doppler study of legs. X-ray of lumbosacral region(Back bone and knee joints are an important tool of investigation. The result of all these investigations decides the further course of treatment.

How to prevent leg cramps

Never in your office, shop or home sit for more than one hour continuously and avoid prolonged standing for more than hour. After one hour take a break and walk for 5 to 10 minutes and then again you can sit. This action must happen every hour. If you have already stood continuously for more than an hour, take a break and sit down on the chair, raise your legs for five minutes and do ankle movement to decongest the legs.

If you are a diabetic, go for a morning walk for 4-5 kilometersand in the evening walk for 2-3 Km. Control your weight. In diet take half a litre toned milk. Your diet should include an ample amount of green leafy vegetables. Daily take minimum 250gm of salads and 250gm of fruits. If you can take more than this, you will get more benefit. Avoid aerated drinks & excessive amount of coffee. Avoid any kind of narcotic intake.

Expose your body to sun light daily for at least 2 to 3 hours. In summer season, sun light exposure in the morning from 6 to 8 AM and in the evening between 5 to 6 PM. Believe me if you follow all these advices, you will not have problem of leg cramps.

Mode of Treatment

In majority of leg cramps cases, surgery is not required. You have to bring about a drastic change in your daily routine. Change your profession or occupation if that requires prolonged sitting or standing for hours. Leave tobacco-chewing or smoking permanently. Avoid alcohol intake, as alcohol will make your bones fragile and that will further complicate problem of leg cramps.

If you have problem of veins and it has increased enormously, laser or RFA(radiofrequency ablation) treatment is required. If leg artery is blocked, arterial bypass surgery is required. For all these procedures , you should consult a Vascular or a Cardiovascular surgeon.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author.

The facts, analysis, assumptions and perspective appearing in the article do not reflect the views of GK.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Greater Kashmir