Friday, August 17, 2012

Leg Cramping during Pregnancy: Treating Leg Spasms Naturally

Resting your feet and sinking in to the mattress should be a welcome relief from the strenuous day, however, leg pain due to spasms in the calf muscles during pregnancy can be a major source of discomfort. Leg Cramps can be treated promptly with simple home remedies and exercises. Here is a bit of information about treating leg spasms during pregnancy naturally.

Leg Cramps at Night are Fairly
 Common during Pregnancy

Leg Cramps in Pregnancy: Leg Spasms during Pregnancy

Leg cramps manifest as painful spasms through the calves that are felt particularly at night. Leg spasms may radiate up and down the calves during the day, but they are more evident at night when fluid accumulation and exhaustion are at their peak Calf cramps during pregnancy become more obvious during the 2nd and 3 rd trimesters and learning to deal with them is important.
Night leg cramps are painful, sudden, involuntary contractions of muscles of the leg. By and large, the calf muscles are involved, but, muscles in the thighs and feet may cramp as well.

What Causes Leg Cramps During Pregnancy? Leg Cramps at Night Causes

Common etiological factors for leg cramps during pregnancy include:
  • Excessive and sudden weight gain
  • Inadequate intake of water
  • Compression of blood vessels in the legs due to the blooming uterus
  • Pressure on the nerves going from the trunk to the legs
  • A deficiency of calcium and / or magnesium
  • Pregnancy hormones
Leg Cramps While Sleeping: Leg Spasms at Night

In case you get a cramp while sleeping, stretch your calf muscles immediately. Straighten the leg, heel first, and gently move the toes towards the shin. At first it will hurt, but gradually, the spasm will go away. Massaging the muscle or warming with a hot water bottle helps as well. Restless leg syndrome has been covered separately in another topic.

How to Treat Leg Cramps During Pregnancy?: Natural Treatment for Leg Pain

Here are some simple tips that will help you manage leg cramps effectively,
  • To relieve leg cramps and relieve leg pain during pregnancy, straighten your leg and gently flex the ankle and toes to and fro.
    Stay well Hydrated
  • Before retiring for the night, stand 2 feet away from a wall and place your palms flat against it. Lean forwards, and hold the stretch for 15 seconds, and then relax. This exercise technique helps allay spasms successfully.
  • Sit comfortably on the floor, with your feet stretched out in front of you. Now, gently, push the toes away from the body and hold for 10 seconds. Release. Then, brig the toes close to the body and hold for 10s seconds. Release. Repeat this about 5 times; and perform this exercise twice daily.
  • Ensure that your water intake is good; you must drink 12 glasses daily.
  • Incorporate foods that are good sources of calcium (milk and its products and fish) and magnesium (fresh fruits and vegetables and nuts). Supplements are advocated as well; however, it is vital that you confer with your gynecologist before embarking up on any supplementation.
  • Avoid standing or sitting for prolonged intervals of time.
  • Don’t exert yourself; take sufficient rest. Lie down on your left side to augment blood circulation in the legs.
Remedies for Leg Cramps during Pregnancy: Home Remedies for Leg Spasms during Pregnancy

Here are some simple home remedies and natural treatment options for the effective management of leg pain during pregnancy,  
  • Before bed time, soak your feet and legs up to the calves in warm water for about 15 minutes. Follow this up with a foot rub. This is decidedly soothing and will keep leg cramps at bay. What’s more, soaking your feet in warm water also induces peaceful sleep.
  • Massaging the feet, ankles and calves with warm sesame oil or essential oils is vastly beneficial. Use firm pressure up the legs and gentle strokes down the legs. Around the ankles, make gentle circles; they feel good and relaxing.
  • Stretch the calf muscles frequently through the day. Revolve the ankles and wriggle your toes when you sit. Take a short walk daily, unless your gynecologist has informed you not to.


  1. Hi,

    I was wondering if you accepted any guest posting on your site? I couldn’t manage to find your email on the site. If you could get a hold of me at, I would greatly appreciate it!


    1. Hi,
      My email address is I would be glad if you could contribute a guest post for my blog. You could write to me if you have any questions. Will get in touch with you soon.

      Dr. S