Does anyone else experience sleep-awakening leg cramps?
Well, let me just answer that: yes, lots of people do. According to a CNN blog article by Dr. Lisa Shives, sleep awakening leg cramps is a form of sleep disorder and the list of possible causes is quite diverse.
- Diabetes (side effect, not prognosis)
- Oral contraceptives
- Electrolyte imbalance (chug a Gatorade!)
- Low potassium levels
- Dehydration (which is probably the most common.)
If cramping is severe and the above don’t seem to be contributing factors, consult a physician to differentiate leg cramping from a more serious condition, such as akathisia (movement disorder characterized by a feeling of inner restlessness), myelopathy (degenerative condition that pinches the
spinal cord), peripheral neuropathy (damage to nerves of the peripheral nervous
system), or disorders of calcium imbalance.
Although these seem like scary outcomes, Dr. Shives believes most cases are from a simple lack of strengthening and stretching of the calf and feet muscles.
To read more about sleep-related issues from Dr. Shives, visit http://nssleep.com/blog.
My Healthy Choice of the Day: Sticking to my cottage cheese-filled pita and grapefruit for lunch instead of grabbing a slice of pizza from the break room. Gotta love that willpower!