Pain and discomfort that is anywhere in the legs and can range from dull pain to severe stinging pain can be called leg pain. Leg pain is a common problem. It can be due to a cramp, injury, or other cause. Pain in the lower extremities can also be caused by a variety of causes, including arthritis, overuse, and blood clots. Most leg pains are caused by overuse or minor injuries. In many cases, the symptoms disappear in a short time and can be relieved with home remedies. Treatment depends on the cause of the pain. Rest, ice, elevation, and pain relievers can take care of many types of leg pain.
However, in some cases, any serious medical condition may be the cause of the pain. Seek medical attention if you have severe or persistent leg pain. Prompt diagnosis and treatment of the underlying condition can prevent the pain from getting worse and improve the long-term outlook.
What causes your leg pain?
- Leg pain can be caused by muscle cramps (also known as Charlie’s horses)- Cramps usually cause sudden, sharp pain when the leg muscles contract. Tensioning muscles often form a visible, hard knot under the skin. There may be redness or swelling in that area. The common causes of these cramps usually are dehydration or low levels of potassium, sodium, calcium, or magnesium in the blood, drugs (diuretics, statins, etc.) or muscle fatigue or tension due to excessive use, excessive movement, or long-term holding of the muscle in the same position.
- Injuries can cause leg pains- They are usually cracks in the hairline (stress fracture), inflamed tendon (tendinitis) or shin splints (pain in front of the legs due to overuse).
- Muscle tension is a common injury that occurs when muscle fibers tear as a result of excessive stretching. It often occurs in large muscles such as the hamstrings, calves, or quadriceps.
- Tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons. A tendon is a thick string that connects muscles and bones. When they become inflamed, it can be difficult to move the affected joints. Tendinitis often affects tendons near the hamstrings or by the heel bone.
- Knee bursitis occurs when the fluid-filled sac or synovial bursa surrounding the knee joint becomes inflamed.
- Shin splints cause pain along the inner edge of the shin or tibia. Injuries can occur when the muscles around the tibia tear due to overuse. Fatigue fractures are small fractures of the leg bones, especially the one in the shin bone.
Other common causes of leg pain due to medical conditions are:
- Peripheral artery disease (PAD) causes problems with blood flow in the legs (this type of pain, called lameness, occurs with exercise and walking and is relieved by rest), thrombosis due to long-term rest (deep vein thrombosis), atherosclerosis, bone (osteomyelitis) or skin and soft tissue (cellulitis) infections, inflammation of lower limb joints due to arthritis and gout, nerve injuries in diabetics, smokers and alcoholics and varicose vein.
- Atherosclerosis is the narrowing and hardening of arteries due to the accumulation of fat and cholesterol. Arteries are blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood throughout the body. It reduces blood flow to various parts of the body when there is a block. If the leg tissue does not get enough oxygen, it can cause leg pain, especially in the calves.
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein in the body. A blood clot is a solid blood clot. DVT usually forms on the lower legs after long periods of rest, causing swelling and cramping pain.
- Arthritis is inflammation of the joints. This condition can cause swelling, pain, and redness in the affected area. Knees and hips are often affected. A gout is a form of arthritis that can occur when too much uric acid builds up in the body. It usually causes pain, swelling, and redness in the feet and lower part of the legs.
- Varicose veins are knotted and enlarged veins that form when the veins overfill with blood due to incompetent valves. They usually appear swollen or raised and can be painful. They most often occur in the calves and ankles. Infection of the bones and tissues of the legs can cause swelling, redness, and pain in the affected area. Nerve damage to the legs can cause numbness, pain, or tingling. It usually occurs in the legs and lower extremities as a result of diabetes. It is called Diabetic neuropathy and is a common complication of diabetes. Nerves can be damaged by high blood sugar levels. It can cause pain in both legs, along with numbness and decreased sensation in the lower limbs.
Some of the other causes are:
- A slipped (herniated) disk takes place while one of the rubbery disks among the vertebrates slips out of place. The disk can compress nerves withinside the backbone. This may also cause an ache that travels out of your backbone on your fingers and legs.
- Bone cancer tumor (osteosarcoma, Ewing’s sarcoma): Malignant, or cancerous, bone tumors may also shape withinside the large leg bones, together with the thighbone or shinbone.
- Legg Calve Perthes disease: Legg-Calve-Perthes sickness takes place because of an interruption of the blood deliver to the ball of the hip joint. In simple words, poor blood flow to the hip joint can stop or slow the normal growth of the legs. The loss of blood delivery seriously damages the bone and might deform it permanently. These abnormalities frequently bring about aches, especially across the hip, thigh, or knee. This frequently takes place in the course of adolescence.
- Benign (benign) tumor or cyst (osteoid osteoma) of the femur or tibia: Noncancerous, or benign, tumors also can broaden withinside the thighbone or shinbone.
- Displaced femoral epiphysis: most common for boys aged 11 to 15 and overweight children.
- Osgood-Schlatter sickness takes place while the tendon that connects the kneecap to the shinbone turns strained. It pulls at the cartilage of the tibia wherein it attaches to the bone. It reasons a painful lump to shape beneath the knee, ensuing in tenderness and swelling across the knee. It frequently takes place in teenagers experiencing increased spurts in the course of puberty.
- Slipped capital femoral epiphysis is a separation of the ball of the hip joint from the thighbone, inflicting hip ache. The situation best takes place in children, folks that are overweight.
Here are a few remedies you can try:
- You can deal with leg ache at domestic if it`s because of cramps or a minor injury. Try a few of these domestic remedies whilst your leg ache is from muscle cramps, fatigue, or overuse:
- Rest your leg as a whole lot as possible and lift them a little with pillows.
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever, consisting of aspirin or ibuprofen, to assist ease soreness as your leg heals.
- Wear compression socks or stockings with support.
- Apply ice to the affected location of your leg at least 4 times each day. You can do that even more often withinside the first few days after the pain appears. You can leave the ice on for so long as 15 mins at a time.
- Take a warm shower and stretch. Take a warm bath, after which you can lightly stretch your muscles when you have an ache, and together with that, try pointing and straightening your feet whilst sitting or standing can help. If you have an ache along the top part of your leg, attempt to bend over and touch your feet. You can do that whilst sitting on the floor or standing up. Ease into every stretch, preserving every role for five to ten seconds. Stop stretching in case your ache becomes worse.
When to contact a doctor:
Contact your doctor if your self-care steps do not help, and if you have painful legs or are swollen or red, if you have a fever or if walking and exercising is making the pain worse and resting is making it more painful, if your legs are black and blue or if they are cold and pale. if you are taking medicines that may be causing leg pain, do not stop taking or change any of your medicines without talking to your provider.
A few Methods to prevent leg pain:
We know prevention is always better than cure. To prevent lower limb pain from physical activity, you should always take time to stretch your muscles before and after training. Eating potassium-rich foods such as bananas and chicken can also help prevent damage to your leg muscles and tendons.
You can prevent diseases that can cause nerve damage to your feet by exercising 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week, maintaining a healthy weight, also try your best to avoid smoking, monitoring your cholesterol and blood pressure, and take steps to control them. If you consume alcohol, limit to 1 drink daily for females and 2 drinks daily for men. Talk to your doctor about other ways to prevent certain causes of lower limb pain.
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