Muscle discomfort can occur in adults and children. In many cases, sore and aching muscles are nothing to worry about and they can be resolved without medical treatment. However, muscle aches can sometimes be a symptom of an underlying illness. Muscle discomfort may occur when your muscles feel tight and you find it more difficult to move than you usually do, especially after rest. You may also have muscle pains, cramping, and discomfort.
What are muscle aches?
Muscle aches are extremely common. Almost everyone has experienced discomfort in their muscles at some point because there is muscle tissue in nearly all parts of the body. This type of pain can be felt practically anywhere.
Myalgia (also called muscle pain and muscle ache in layman’s terms) is the medical term for muscle pain. Myalgia is a symptom of many diseases. The most common cause of acute myalgia is the overuse of a muscle or group of muscles; another likely cause is a viral infection, especially when there has been no trauma.
What are the causes of muscle discomfort?
Often, people who experience muscle aches can easily pinpoint the cause. This is because most instances of myalgia result from too much stress, tension, or physical activity. Some common causes include:
Stress can cause muscle aches, as well as headaches.Stress makes it harder for the body to fight off disease. In people who are unwell and stressed, the muscles may ache as the body struggles to combat inflammation or infection.
Symptoms of stress include:
● Heart palpitations or an increased heart rate
● High blood pressure
● Chest pains
People can try to combat muscle discomfort caused by stress by learning relaxation techniques, using aids for sore muscle relief, pain relief spray and, removing themselves from stressful situations where possible.
Sprains and strains
Strains, sprains, and other injuries can cause muscle pain and discomfort.
People may find that a particular area of the body becomes stiff and achy if it is injured. Pulling muscles can also cause muscle soreness.
Some sprains and strains do not need treatment, but a person should rest, take over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers, muscle recovery supplements or use heat packs to ease the symptoms.
However, if the injury is causing significant pain, restricting normal movement, or not improving with time, it is advisable to see your doctor.
Too much physical activity
Overdoing exercise can lead to stiff, sore muscles.
The following factors can make a person more susceptible to muscle aches and pains when exercising:
● When you are not used to exercising
● Trying a new exercise
● Exercising more intensely or for longer than usual
● Failing to warm up or stretch properly
People can try to combat muscle discomfort caused by too many physical activities by using muscle relaxation cream, muscle pain relief, muscle recovery supplements, etc.
A dehydrated person may experience muscle aches.
Drinking enough water is vital to keep the body functioning properly as it can quickly begin to shut down without adequate fluids. Dehydration causes essential bodily functions, such as breathing and digestion, to become more difficult.
People should be aware of how much water they are drinking. The recommended amount is 6–8 glasses of water each day. If hot weather or exercise causes a person to perspire more than usual, they will need to drink more than this.
Neuromuscular disorders affect muscles and the nerves that control them. They can cause muscle weakness and pain. These conditions include:
1. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease)
2. Muscular dystrophy
3. Myasthenia gravis
4. Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA)
Bacterial and viral infections can make you feel achy all over. Depending on the cause, you may also have swollen lymph nodes, fever and nausea.
Types of infections that cause muscle aches include:
1. Colds and flu
2. Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever (infections spread through tick bites)
4. Trichinosis (a foodborne illness)
Certain medications and therapies can cause temporary or chronic pain. Some medicines cause inflammation around muscle cells (myositis) or activate muscle pain receptors. These treatments include:
1. Cancer treatments, including chemotherapy and radiation therapy
2. High blood pressure medications, such as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
3. Statins to lower cholesterol levels
What other conditions cause muscle pain and discomfort?
Other conditions that also cause muscle pain include:
1. Cancers, such as sarcomas (soft tissue cancers) and leukemia (blood cancer)
2. Chronic fatigue syndrome
3. Compartment syndrome (a buildup of pressure in muscles)
5. Imbalance of electrolytes (minerals in your blood, such as calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium)
6. Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
7. Peripheral artery disease (PAD)
8. Stress and tension
Symptoms of muscle aches
Some people who have muscle aches may notice the following symptoms alongside the soreness and discomfort in their muscles:
1. stiffness and weakness in the affected area
5. difficulty in breathing
6. signs of infection, such as redness and swelling
Some of these symptoms, such as a very high fever or difficulty in breathing, will require immediate medical attention.
If the cause of the ache is a strain, an injury, tension, or stress, people will usually feel discomfort in a particular area and using muscle pain relief or muscle recovery supplements may be of great help in reducing these symptoms.
When aches occur throughout the entire body, this is more likely to be due to an infection, medication, or underlying illness
Ways to relieve muscle discomfort at home
1. Rest the area of the body where you’re experiencing aches and pains.
2. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen.
3. Apply ice to the affected area to help relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
4. Gently stretch the muscles.
5. Avoid high-impact activities until after the muscle pain goes away.
6. Avoid weight lifting sessions until the muscle pain is resolved.
7. Engage in stress-relieving activities and exercises such as yoga and meditation to relieve tension.
8. Use a massage gun to massage your muscles and body. Exogun DreamPro is recommended as it is the best massager available.
Occasional muscle aches and discomfort are normal, especially if you’re active or new to exercise. Always pay attention to your body and stop doing any activity if your muscle starts hurting you.
If the muscle pain persists without any sign of muscle recovery after using the various home remedies listed above, you should see your doctor.