It would seem that only athletes, both professional and amateur, are often prone to injury. However, with the arrival of spring, we undertake more intense physical activity, such as walking on sunny days, cycling, spending time with our pets or fulfilling our New Year’s resolutions to lose unnecessary weight. Unfortunately, if we don’t prepare properly for the effort, we are at risk of stretching the muscle. This can be extremely painful, but fortunately, it is easy to manage.
How does muscle strain occur?
The muscle is stretched as a result of training without prior preparation, i.e. warming up. In such a situation, it is exposed to micro-injuries that cause intense pain and swelling. In addition, this can occur with occasional or sudden physical exertion, such as lifting weights or running to a bus or streetcar. It can also be the result of an injury or contusion. How do you know when a muscle is stretched? It is betrayed by a very intense, piercing pain that increases with movement or touch. In addition, a bruise and swelling form in its place.
How to treat a stretched muscle?
The first thing to do with a pulled muscle is to apply a cold pack. You can apply ice to the limb (preferably with a cloth or gauze) or a specialized cold pack in gel form. Cooling works best on the first day after the injury: it helps to overcome pain and reduce swelling. On the second day, it is best to replace cold compresses with warm ones, such as a hot water bottle. You can also buy special ointments in the pharmacy that will help you solve the problem – among them, the one with the addition of arnica is the most effective.
Home remedies for muscles
If a tight muscle makes you feel tight, apple cider vinegar comes in handy. This natural medicine has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. It will also help reduce swelling. How to apply it? It is best to pour two glasses of vinegar into a bathtub filled with water and soak the injured body part for half an hour. You can also try to consume the product once a day for a week: just dissolve a tablespoon of vinegar in a glass of warm water.
1. Clove oil
Clove oil is useful not only in aromatherapy. It is a natural remedy that helps relieve inflammation and also has analgesic and antiviral properties. Eugenol is responsible for this relationship – it will also be useful in the case of a strained muscle. Simply heat a teaspoon of the product, then carefully rub it into the sore spot.
Chili is a hot spice that gives a unique spice to many dishes. It contains capsaicin, which has an analgesic, warming, and anti-inflammatory effect. Chili can help with tight muscles. Simply mix half a teaspoon of the medicine (or cayenne pepper) with the same amount of olive oil. It is enough to rub the prepared paste in the sore spot twice a day.
When should you see a doctor?
Although home remedies most often provide quick relief, sometimes specialist help is needed. Especially when the pain gets worse and the swelling does not go down. The reason may be a more serious injury and the performance of specialized tests that will help determine the cause of pain and implement effective treatment.