- Leg pain can affect how you carry out your daily activities.
- It can be caused by different conditions that affect the bones, muscles and nerves.
- These different conditions require different treatments like home remedies, medications, therapies and even surgeries.
The legs are among the most used part of the body. It is also the body part that experiences pain often. Pain, especially in the lower leg can be due to different conditions affecting the bones, joints, muscles, nerves, arteries and veins.
Read on to know more about these different conditions and their treatments.
1. Sprain and Broken Bones
Mild sprain resulting from a twisted ankle can be relieved by the RICE treatment: rest, ice, compression and elevation. For severe sprain and bone fracture, applying ice, seeing a doctor, putting a cast or brace and undergoing therapy may be required.
2. Muscle Cramps
A muscle cramp is characterized by a sudden, tight and intense pain in the lower leg. It is usually experienced when the muscles are dehydrated or tired and happens in the middle of the day or sleep time.
To avoid muscle cramps, drink more water and stretch properly before doing any exercise. It is also good to massage or stretch the area where the cramps are felt.
3. Shin Splints
This kind of pain is felt at the calves’ front when the shin bone muscles get inflamed, making it painful to walk, run or jump. Shin splints can be brought about by having flat or outward-pointing feet and always doing activities on hard surfaces.
Resting and putting some ice can make the legs feel better. Medications like aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen can also alleviate the pain.
Tendinitis can be caused by an inflamed Achilles tendon experienced as pain in the lower calf near the heel’s back. Overworking the calf muscle and climbing stairs often can result in swollen, stretched and torn tendons. Applying ice, stretching and taking anti-inflammatory drugs can help relieve the pain. If the Achilles is torn, injectable drugs and surgery might be needed.
5. Stenosis and Sciatica
Arthritis of the spine is the common cause of stenosis. On the other hand, sciatica is characterized by burning and cramping leg pain while sitting or standing, fatigue, numbness, tingling and weakness, which is due to the pressure exerted by the herniated disc on the nerve roots.
To alleviate pain, doctors recommend resting, taking pain medications, and undergoing therapies and surgeries.
6. Diabetic Neuropathy
As a diabetes complication, diabetic neuropathy can cause pain, numbness, and sensation loss in both legs. Keeping blood sugar levels at bay and taking appropriate medications can help manage diabetic neuropathy.
7. Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)
When the leg arteries become damaged, hardened or blocked, it can result in PAD. The leg muscles do not get enough blood supply, so it feels cramped and painful when walking, running, jumping and climbing the stairs. PAD can also be due to diabetes, dyslipidemia and hypertension. Several actions like quitting smoking, following a healthy diet, exercising and maintaining a healthy weight can improve PAD.
8. Varicose Veins
They appear as dark blue or purple veins in the surface of the skin. It may cause pain when standing, and this is relieved by the using support stockings and standing up in between sitting.
9. Blood Clot
A blood clot can likely happen to overweight people, smokers, inactive for long periods, takes long flights and car rides often and drinks certain medicines.
Avoid getting clots by losing weight, using support stockings and taking medications. A blood clot requires an immediate visit to a physician.