How To Avoid Cramps
If youve never experienced the excruciating and debilitating pain of a muscle cramp, count yourself lucky! But if you have, the good news is that you can avoid cramps.
When muscle cramping strikes during exercise, it can scupper even the best laid competition or workout plans. And post-exercise cramping is no less traumatic, especially when it strikes in the middle of the night. For all sportsmen and women therefore, minimising the risk of muscle cramps with good nutritional strategies makes extremely good sense.
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Avoid Sugary Drinks To Prevent Stomach Acid
Some sweet fruit juices or smoothies often contain as much sugar as soft drinks. These sugars often take a long time to be digested by the stomach, and it also promotes the production of stomach acid.
One of the best remedies for stomach upset and digestive disorders is water rather than sugary drinks. In addition, water also helps promote intestinal transport and treat constipation.
Home Remedies For Immediate Relief
If your stomach spasms are bothering you, there are ways you can get immediate relief or treat them at home. Some at-home treatments will treat the underlying cause of muscle spasms, while others relax the stomach muscles so that they stop spasming.
If youre having stomach spasms in pregnancy, talk to your doctor before trying any home remedies. Some home treatments may not be safe during pregnancy.
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Heres The Best Way To Cure An Upset Stomach
A stomach ache can strike for all kinds of reasons, from contaminated food to chronic disease. It passes, sure, but the pain, headache, diarrhea, vomiting and other classic symptoms of stomach flu ensure a crummy couple of days
It can be tough to know what to put in your body when youre dealing with an upset stomach, but there are a few surefire foods. Ginger, scientifically, is a good place to start. Ginger and also turmeric, which is a member of the ginger family, seem to be anti-inflammatory, says Dr. Emeran Mayer, a professor of digestive diseases at UCLA. Both ginger and turmeric are roots, he says, and may have developed special antibacterial properties in order to withstand contamination from microorganisms in soil. Skip the sugary commercial ginger ales, which contain little real ginger, and sip water infused with ginger or turmeric instead, he advises.
Once youve stopped vomiting and your stomach feels a bit better, you will want to eat. But dont sit down for a big meal nibble food throughout the day instead, Murray explains.
Another issue is that nearly all the research linking probiotics to relief of gut-related issues has looked at freeze-dried probiotics in capsules or tablets, Mason says. Eating yogurt or Kefir or other probiotic foods to relieve symptoms may be effective, but that hasnt yet been shown.
Reducing Muscle Cramping Risk
Strategies involving stretching and relaxing muscles are proven ways to reduce cramping risk and help treat cramping when it occurs . When it comes to improved nutritional strategies however, the scientific evidence about what actually reduces the risk of cramping is far from clearcut, mainly because theres actually very little data from published studies. One reason for the paucity of data is the sheer unpredictability of muscle cramps because its hard to predict when cramping will occur, its almost impossible to collect together a group of athletes to run tests before during and after cramping episodes. There are also ethical reasons muscle cramps are painful and debilitating and it would be hard to justify studies that deliberately induced severe cramping just to collect data! To add to the confusion, the studies that have been conducted have often produced mixed results. For example, South African scientists studied 72 runners competing in an ultra-distance marathon and compared data from those who suffered exercise-induce cramps and those who didnt 1. Although they found small variations in blood levels of post-exercise sodium and magnesium, they concluded that there were no clinically significant alterations in blood electrolyte concentrations and no alteration in hydration status in runners with exercise associated muscle cramping .
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When Should I See My Healthcare Provider About My Abdominal Pain
Always see your doctor if your pain is unexplained, persistent or severe, or if you have been injured or are pregnant.
Also, see your doctor if your pain is accompanied by any of these symptoms:
- Persistent fever.
- Blood in your stools, urine or vomit.
- Swelling and tenderness to the touch.
- Jaundice .
- Pain in any other part of your body.
- Shortness of breath or symptoms that get worse with exertion.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
So many things can cause abdominal pain that its inevitable well all experience it from time to time. Common causes, such as gas and indigestion, menstrual cramps, or even food poisoning and the flu may be instantly recognizable. Other causes may be more mysterious. And sometimes stomach pain is a sign of an unsuspected or serious condition.
Your healthcare provider will always be interested in your abdominal pain, especially if its unexplained. Common causes are often easy to treat, and having your condition diagnosed can help you find relief. Even if your stomach pain is mild, make sure you see your healthcare provider if it doesnt go away, keeps coming back or gets worse.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 04/18/2022.
Know Your Lactose Tolerance
Lactose is a sugar that is found in dairy products. Some people lack enough of the digestive enzyme known as lactase to properly break down this sugar. This is what is commonly known as lactose intolerance. If you have this condition, eating dairy foods can cause stomach cramping and diarrhea.
Interestingly, you can develop lactose intolerance later in life, even if you previously were able to tolerate dairy. Lactase production decreases over time for certain people based on genetic factors. For others, a gastrointestinal infection or inflammatory bowel disease may cause secondary lactose intolerance.
If you are experiencing stomach cramps when running, try taking a closer look at the ingredients in your usual pre-run meal. Is you tend to consume a lot of dairy, try nixing it for a few weeks and see if you notice any improvements.
If the cramps disappear when you cut dairy, you may have lactose intolerance or a dairy sensitivity, and it is worth discussing with your doctor. If there is no improvement, dairy likely was not the issue.
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Use A Heating Pad Or Hot Water Bottle
Heat is a simple but effective remedy for stomach pain. If youre wondering how to get rid of cramps fast, try this tip first. Grab an electric blanket, heating pad, or hot water bottle. You want something thats very warm, but not so hot it will burn you.
Get comfortable and place your heating pad over the part of your stomach that hurts. It might take 10-15 minutes to start feeling the soothing effects of the heat. Dont have a heating pad? You can easily make one with some dry rice and a pair of socks.
Find a pair of socks that dont contain any synthetic material, and pour a cup or two of dry rice into one. Tie a knot in the top and microwave it for a minute or two. Reheat your makeshift heating pad whenever it starts to cool down.
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How To Make Stomach Cramps Go Away With Plain Yogurt
Plain yogurt has been a popular home remedy for abdominal cramps for quite some time. We can understand why, as it has proven its benefits in many cases. Even more so, yogurt with bacteria helps you alleviate pain caused by indigestion.
Make sure that the yogurt you consume is plain, without any added bits of fruit or chocolate. You can either enjoy the yogurt simply, or you can make your own concoction with coriander, cardamom, and a bit of salt. No matter what method you choose, you can drink it multiple times throughout the day for relief.
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How Is The Cause Of Abdominal Pain Diagnosed
Abdominal pain is one of the most common symptoms seen by GPs .
Information about your symptoms and the location of the abdominal pain can help a doctor diagnose the cause of your pain. They will want to know how long you have had the pain and may want to do a physical examination. If you are female, this may include a pelvic examination. If you are male, it may include checking your penis and scrotum.
They may suggest you have some blood tests or other diagnostic procedures done, especially if you have had the symptoms for some time.
Tests and procedures that may help in diagnosing the cause of abdominal pain include:
Other procedures that may be suggested, depending on your gender, include:
- pregnancy test and/or pelvic ultrasound
- ultrasound of the scrotum
Apple Cider Vinegar Natural Remedy To Get Rid Of Stomach Cramps
Severe abdominal cramping can also be treated with the help of apple cider vinegar. It works by helping out your digestive system and alleviating symptoms like bloating or gas. Take one glass of lukewarm water and add 1 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar.
Mix it well and drink it while the water is still warm. If the taste is too much, you can always add an extra tablespoon of organic honey to help drink it up. You should repeat this remedy one time every couple of hours and you will soon see any lower or upper abdominal cramps disappear.
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Can Stress Cause Stomach Pain
Anxiety and stress are closely related. But they are technically different conditions. It is possible to experience a significant amount of stress without experiencing anxiety. Yet the causes of stomach pain from stress are similar. Muscle tension, digestive issues all of these are also caused by stress and may contribute to stomach pain.
What Causes Muscle Spasms
Idiopathic means that the exact cause is unknown, and thats the case with muscle spasms. Some experts believe that one of more of the following may be to blame in most cases:
- Not enough stretching.
Possible causes for nocturnal leg cramps , specifically, include:
- Sitting for long periods of time.
- Overusing the muscles.
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What Are The Four Types Of Abdominal Pain
Since your abdomen it is home to many organs, your healthcare provider may want to narrow down the kind of pain youre having by narrowing down the region youre feeling it in. Healthcare providers often divide the abdomen into quadrants or four parts. They may ask if your pain is in the:
- Right upper quadrant.
- Left lower quadrant.
You Got Into The Bag Of Sugar Free Candies
Sugar free candies may seem like a good idea, especially if you are trying to cut back on sugar while still getting to enjoy the sweetness they provide. However, these candies are typically sweetened with a sugar alcohols like sorbitol which is notorious for causing bloating, cramping and yes, even rampant diarrhea.
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How Can I Treat Abdominal Pain
If you have abdominal pain, keeping warm and placing a heat pack or hot water bottle on your stomach may help.
If your abdominal pain does not require you to stop eating and drinking, stay well hydrated by drinking plenty of clear, non-alcoholic fluids. If you have a medical condition that restricts your fluid intake, check with your doctor about how much fluid you can have.
Eat small meals and Ã¢ foods such as rice, dry toast or bananas. Avoid spicy foods, alcohol and caffeine until 48 hours after the pain has gone away.
Several medicines can help if you have non-acute abdominal pain, including:
- paracetamol to ease the pain
- charcoal tablets or similar for wind pain
- medicines to ease spasms
- medicines to stop diarrhoea
Avoid aspirin or anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen and naproxen since these can irritate your stomach. A pharmacist can advise you about the most appropriate medicine for your abdominal pain.
In more serious cases, the treatment recommended will depend on the cause and severity of the abdominal pain, and how long you have had it. Treatment may include following a particular diet in the long term getting more exercise taking medicines or having surgery.
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Stomach Pain In Children
Children suffer relatively often from abdominal pain. Worried parents ask themselves what could be the cause of the complaints: Fatty food in the evening? A gastrointestinal virus? Or is it a simple fear of school? To rule out a physical cause, you should always consult a physician, especially if the pain persists or returns frequently.
Small children in particular often have difficulties locating the pain correctly and other parts of the body can be affected. However, if children keep complaining about having abdominal pain, its often caused by stress. This can trigger a disturbance in their stomach movement and hypersensitivity within the gastrointestinal tract – and thus complaints such as nausea, bloating, stomach cramps and flatulence. In addition to abdominal pain, there are other symptoms that may be associated with stress, for instance:
- Changes in behaviour
- Concentration deficits
If the reason for such a stomach pain is stress, there are measures to prevent and combat it. Try to:
- Actively listen and ask questions about worries and fears combined with offering suggestions for solutions.
- Help your child to spend his or her free time in a relaxed way – with selected activities/hobbies that are fun, with enough time for play and for friends.
- Show your child that school is a good place by encouraging him or her to attend regularly otherwise, the problem can only get worse.
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When To Seek Help
A person should seek help if they notice that they or someone they love has symptoms of alcohol use disorder. Seeking help can be challenging for the person who is struggling with addiction. Loved ones and friends can help by letting the person know that they are not alone in their struggle.
If a person is unsure whether they need help, Recovery Worldwide suggest that they use a tool called CAGE, which is a short questionnaire that healthcare professionals may use to help screen people for treatment.
If a person can answer yes to two or more of the CAGE questions, they should consider seeking treatment.
The CAGE questions are as follows:
- Have you ever felt that you should cut down on your drinking?
- Have people annoyed you by criticizing your drinking?
- Have you ever felt bad or guilty about your drinking?
- Have you ever had a drink first thing in the morning to steady your nerves or get over a hangover?
Drink More Water Less Soda
Water helps keep things moving in your gut so you stay regular. Pay attention to your body when youâre thirsty, and have a glass of water, not soda. Carbonation can cause stomach pain because the fizz can lead to gas.
Alcoholic and caffeinated beverages can cause trouble for some people, too, so steer clear of them if they bother your stomach.
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Why Do Stomach Cramps
Stomach cramps are an inconvenience caused by pain or irritation over the coating of the stomach. There can be various reasons and conditions that can cause stomach cramps. That underlying cause isnt always serious.
It could range from gas to abnormal growth, infection, menstruation, pregnancy and intestinal disorders. Sometimes infection from the throat and blood can enter the digestive tract and cause stomach cramps. The result could be diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
What Causes Period Pain
There can be many reasons for period pain, and if you experience chronic painful periods, its only natural to wonder why. Maybe youre the only woman in your family who gets severe cramps. Maybe your painful periods didnt start until your 20s. Whatever your situation, a doctor can help you understand why you get painful cramps every month. Some of the most common causes of painful periods are:
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What Are The Potential Complications Of Stomach Cramps
Complications associated with stomach cramps can be progressive and vary depending on the underlying cause. Because stomach cramps can be due to serious diseases, failure to seek treatment can result in complications and permanent damage.
It is important to visit your healthcare provider when you have persistent stomach cramps or other unusual symptoms. Once the underlying cause is diagnosed, following the treatment plan outlined by your doctor can help reduce any potential complications including:
Poor nutrition and vitamin deficiencies due to a decreased desire to eat
Spread of cancer
Avoid Your Personal Trigger Foods
If your cramps tend to flare up after a meal, your body is probably struggling to digest something you ate. Trigger foods can worsen inflammation and gas, which increases the pain, Dr. Naik says. Keeping a food log can help you spot any culprits, which may include dairy, carbonated drinks, and high-fiber foods, according to the Crohns & Colitis Foundation. Try eating soft, bland foods like bananas and toast while you figure out your personal triggers.
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