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How can you prevent foot cramps?

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One key to keeping cramps at bay is to keep your body limber and healthy. Here's how:

If your foot cramps cause a lot of pain or won’t go away, give your doctor a call. There may be an underlying cause to treat.

  • Stretch. Warm up your muscles, especially when you know you’ll be using them for a long time. Stretch both before and after you exercise. If you tend to get leg cramps at night, make sure to stretch before you go to bed. Doing a few minutes of light exercise like stationary bike riding before you sleep can help your muscles relax better while you sleep, too.
  • Hydrate. Plenty of water throughout the day can help ward off cramps. Your body’s cells are happier when they have lots of fluids. Drink more when you’re more active, or when the weather is hot or dry. Keep the water coming. That'll help you and your muscles stay hydrated and relaxed.
  • Eat a healthy diet. Fill your plate with colorful fruits and vegetables. Be sure to get plenty of calcium, potassium, and magnesium. (Bananas are a good bet.) Cut back on alcohol, too. That can dehydrate you and make you cramp up.
  • Check your medications. Some come with a side effect of muscle cramps. Even if you can’t switch what you take, you’ll know where your cramps are coming from. That'll make you better prepared to step up other measures to keep you from the pain.
  • Focus on your footwear. Do you spend a lot of time in heels or other uncomfortable shoes? Make sure your wardrobe isn’t behind your foot woes.

   

SOURCES:

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine: “Muscle Cramp.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Don’t Let Foot Cramps and Charley Horses Slow You Down.”

Mayo Clinic: “Muscle Cramp.”

 

Reviewed by Ross Brakeville on May 31, 2017

   

SOURCES:

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine: “Muscle Cramp.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Don’t Let Foot Cramps and Charley Horses Slow You Down.”

Mayo Clinic: “Muscle Cramp.”

 

Reviewed by Ross Brakeville on May 31, 2017

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