Nocturnal cramps in the legs are spasms and contractions of the muscles that happen during the night. Usually, the cramps happen in the lower part of the leg.

However, they can happen in the feet and thighs. The pain during the cramp can be so strong that can even wake you up. The leg cramp can last for a few seconds to a few minutes. The following day, the pain will be gone, but the spot will remain sore.

Both women and men can experience leg cramps. They are especially common after the age of 50.

The difference between leg cramps and restless leg syndrome

Both leg cramps and restless leg syndrome occur when you sleep. However, they are different.

RLS is a neurological disorder where the person has an uncontrolled need to move the legs. When the legs are moved in case of restless leg syndrome, relief is experienced. However, the same does not happen with leg cramps.

The causes behind leg cramps:

• Taking certain medications
• Pregnancy
• Standing on hard surfaces, such as concrete ground
• Excessive intake of alcohol
• Leading a sedentary lifestyle
• Certain exercises
• Sitting in a bad position

The tips of dealing with leg cramps:

• Take a hot shower or bath before going to sleep
• Exercise in water
• Stretch your legs before bed
• Take magnesium and potassium
• Improve the blood flow with chestnuts
• Buy ergonomic shoes
• Apply heat pads on the spot where you experience cramps

Elimination of leg cramps:

Sit on the floor, spread your legs in the front, bend your feet and point your toes outwardly. Get up and shake the legs. Take 1 tablespoon of mustard and massage the areas with circular motions.