What Are Muscle Spasms?

You reach for something on the top shelf of your cupboard, and you wince in pain as a muscle in your back spasms. The pain is excruciating, and you can barely move. How could it be that something as simple as reaching for a cup could result in such terrible pain?

The answer is – it didn’t. Reaching for that cup caused an already strained muscle to overextend. This overextension caused the muscle to stiffen and spasm to protect itself from further harm. Due to repetitive movements, muscles can become strained. Habits such as poor posture, swinging a racquet, heavy lifting, or sitting in front of a computer can lead to strained muscles.

When muscles have been strained for a period of time, it often only takes one sudden movement, like reaching for the cup, for that already strained muscle to spasm. When a spasm occurs, all of the muscle fibers contract simultaneously. The muscle contraction cuts off blood supply, which causes even more pain in the muscle, leading to further muscle contraction. All too often, this is a common occurrence for some people who end up on the floor in pain for hours because the muscle doesn’t relax when moved.

Relief for Your Muscle Spasms

It can take up to several weeks for a muscle spasm to subside, so give the following suggestions a try to help the healing process.

  •          Lots of rest.
  •          Apply ice/heat and try massage therapy to help relieve the pain.
  •          Increase your intake of calcium, magnesium, and water as a lack of these are believed to provoke muscle spasms, so taking in more of all three may help as well.
  •          Seek chiropractic care. 

Once muscle spasms are present, chiropractic care can help alleviate the cause. It can also help to prevent it from occurring to begin with. In order for muscle function to occur properly, proper nerve function is essential. Chiropractic adjustments find and correct areas in the spine where nerve dysfunction exists.