Calf Muscle Ache
Calf Muscle Ache
If you experience pain near the lower half of the back of your leg, you may have strained your calf muscle. Causes of a calf muscle ache or pain can include everything from moving too little to moving too much. Before you call your doctor, try these natural remedies for relief.
If your calf muscles are achy and stiff, your shoes may be to blame. Wearing the wrong shoes can also prevent the muscle from healing properly in the days following a calf injury. Avoid wearing high heels or any shoe that lacks cushioning or support. If possible, wear athletic shoes with slightly elevated heels. When athletic shoes aren’t an option, consider purchasing heel pads and placing them in any flat-soled pair of shoes.
Gently massaging your sore muscle with topical arnica cream provides a warming sensation and fast relief. This medicinal herb is renowned for its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Wash your hands after applying the cream to avoid getting it in your eyes. You can find arnica creams and ointments at health food stores and natural healing centers.
A combination of rest, ice, compression and elevation is often sufficient to soothe a mild calf muscle ache. Rest your leg taking care to avoid placing too much weight on it and over-exerting yourself. Wrap an ice pack in a cloth or towel, then apply it to the painful area for up to 20 minutes at a time. If you experience swelling in the area, cover it with an elastic sleeve or bandage. Elevating your leg above heart level also reduces inflammation and soreness.
Gentle stretching helps to ease away calf muscle pain without causing further damage. Start by placing your hands on a wall and standing with your left leg outstretched behind you. Your right leg needs to be bent at the knee and positioned approximately 1 foot in front of the left. With your hands still flat against the wall, dip your body slightly downward, and hold that position for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat until you feel relief.