Ask The Expert
April 14, 2011
Muscle cramps are very common. And the pain can be extremely intense.
Some women report an increase in the frequency of muscle cramps just before their menstrual period and during the first couple days. I could not find a scientific reason for this.
All kinds of remedies have been proposed to treat and prevent muscle cramps. When many therapies are proposed for a condition it usually means none are highly successful. This is certainly true for muscle cramps.
Safe things you can try to prevent muscle cramps include:
While stretching is often recommended for people with leg cramps, the evidence that this helps is mixed. Since it is safe, I recommend gentle stretching during the day and especially before bed. For example, you might try gently pulling back on your fingers and toes a few times per day and when you first get into bed at night.