Sore muscles and muscle pains aren’t just uncomfortable. These can keep you from getting the most of your daily routine.
What causes sore muscles?
Sore muscles normally occur after you work out, do sports, or any physical activity, especially if you exerted more effort or worked longer than you’re used to. These changes in your routine can lead to small injuries in your muscle fibers and connective tissue, causing you to feel sore a day or two afterwards.
This occurrence is called delayed onset muscle soreness. This type of muscle soreness peaks within 48 hours, then gradually gets better. On the bright side, your muscles will start getting used to the strain the next time you do the same activity. This means little to no soreness because the muscles or connective tissues have become stronger.
How to soothe and relieve sore muscles
Still, sore muscles are literally a pain to deal with. Take note of these tips to relieve sore muscles:
Even if it’s tempting to just stay in bed and not move, moving for a little bit actually helps relieve sore muscles. Even slow and gentle movements like walking and light stretches can get blood flowing to your muscles, facilitating the recovery process.
Drinking plenty of water is always a good idea, not just after doing physical activities, but also before and during. Staying hydrated while working out or exerting yourself is one of the best defenses against sore muscles. Steer clear of alcohol and caffeine as these only dehydrate you.
Treat it with ice, then heat.
A common question when nursing sore muscles is whether to use ice or heat. The best way to go about it is to start off with indirect ice—like an ice pack wrapped in a towel—then applying heat for a while. The cold temperature cuts inflammation, while heat increases blood flow to the target area.
Take medicine for sore muscles.
For quick relief from muscle pain, you can take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug like Alaxan FR. The ibuprofen helps change the body’s chemical response to pain and swelling, resulting in relief of pain.