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13 Highly Effective Home Remedies To Relieve Painful Muscle Cramps

Muscle cramps are most common in people who participate in sports, like athletes, marathon runners, cyclists, and runners. Muscle cramps are sudden, involuntary contractions that could occur in different muscle groups. They can last from anywhere between a few seconds to a quarter of an hour or more. However, the most common muscle groups affected are the muscles in the back of the lower leg and the front and back of the thighs. Cramps could also affect your arms, feet, hands and even the abdominal wall.

Suggested read: 10 simple home remedies to eliminate leg cramps fast

An intense, sharp pain is the most common symptom of a muscle cramp. Sometimes, swelling, inflammation, soreness are also common. In some rare cases, muscle cramps are accompanied by hard lumps beneath the surface of the skin. Although the main cause of a muscle cramp isn’t known, it is most often caused by overuse of certain muscle groups while doing some kind of exercise or physical exertion.

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Other causes for muscle cramps include:

  • Dehydration
  • Poor blood circulation
  • Muscle injuries
  • Mineral deficiencies (potassium, magnesium, or calcium)
  • Drinking excessive alcohol
  • Diabetes
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Spinal nerve compression
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Pregnancy
  • Kidney failure

Home remedies for muscle cramps

You don’t need medical attention to treat most muscle cramps. In fact, stretching and massaging the affected muscle groups help treat cramps. However, you can speed up the recovery process and lessen the discomfort by trying some easy and simple home remedies for muscle cramps that work. Take a look:

1. Apple cider vinegar

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Apple cider vinegar contains high amounts of potassium that helps relieve muscle cramps since a potassium deficiency is one of the common causes for a the cramps in the first place. Additionally, apple cider vinegar is packed full of several other nutrients that help in controlling the fluid balance in the body, thus curbing dehydration.


  • To 1 glass of warm water, add 1 teaspoon each of apple cider vinegar and honey along with 1 tablespoon of calcium lactate. Drink this concoction every night, half an hour before going to bed. This helps relieve nocturnal leg cramps, in particular.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to 1 glass of warm water and stir well. Drink this once every day to prevent muscle cramps.

2. Black strap molasses

Muscle cramps caused due to a deficiency of calcium and potassium can be treated with black strap molasses, since it is packed full of these same minerals.


  • To 1 glass of warm water or milk, mix 1 tablespoon of black strap molasses and stir well. Drink this concoction for quick relief from painful muscle cramps. Drink this as needed to help relieve the cramps.

Tip: You can include this drink in your regular diet to prevent a deficiency of calcium and potassium in your body.

3. Clove oil

Clove oil is an essential oil that contains anti-inflammatory properties that help in reducing the swelling and inflammation caused by the cramps. Additionally, it also possesses anesthetic property, which helps in alleviating the associated pain.


  • Warm some clove oil and use it to gently massage the affected area. Do this for about 5 minutes to help with the pain and inflammation. Repeat the process as needed.

4. Cold compress

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Use a cold compress to help ease the sore muscles for relief from the cramps. The cold will help numb the pain, lower the inflammation, while allowing the affected muscles to relax. Additionally, the cold temperature helps reduce the soreness by constricting the blood vessels.


  • Take a thin towel and put a few ice cubes in it. Wrap it up and place the pack on the affected muscles for about 15 minutes at a time. Repeat this remedy every couple of hours for a day or two to help with the cramps.
  • Take a cold shower to help relax the sore muscles and alleviate the pain.

Tip: Do not put ice cubes directly on your skin.

5. Drink fluids

As mentioned above, dehydration is one of the common causes of leg cramps. Whether or not you’re athletic, rehydrating your body will help in providing quick relief from the pain and soreness.


  • As soon as you experience cramping, drink a couple of glasses of water slowly. To prevent cramps altogether, make it a point to drink enough water through the day and keep yourself hydrated.
  • Drink some water at least two hours before you start your workout, if you tend to get muscle cramps during exercise. Sip small amounts of water during the exercise too, to help prevent muscle cramps.
  • Consuming water-rich fruits and vegetables help in reducing the chance of muscle cramps.

Suggested read: Suffering from horrible menstrual cramps? Get relief with these home remedies

6. Epsom salt

Epsom salt helps in treating muscle cramps successfully. It is filled with magnesium, which helps in promoting muscle healing and relaxation.


  • Fill up your bathtub with water that is hot, but not scalding. To this, add 2 cups of Epsom salt and stir, so that it gets dissolved. Soak in this hot water tub for about 20 minutes to help relax the sore, swollen muscles, while also helping alleviate the pain. Repeat this remedy the following day if you haven’t found relief yet.

Tip: If you’re suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart problems, do NOT use Epsom salt in your baths.

7. Massage


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Massaging the affected area helps alleviate the stiffness and soreness caused by the muscle cramps.


  • In a clean bowl, mix together one part wintergreen oil with four parts vegetable oil. Use this to massage the affected muscles in long, smooth strokes, till they are relaxed and lessens the pain and soreness.

8. Rosemary

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Rosemary contains anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe inflamed muscles, while also helping reduce pain and soreness. Additionally, it also has a warming effect that helps promote relaxation of the cramped muscles. Since it is absorbed easily through skin, it also helps speed up the recovery time.


  • Take a one-pint jar and place 1 ounce of fresh rosemary leaves in it. Add boiling water over it and cover it with a lid. Let it steep for half an hour. Then, soak a clean washcloth in this solution, wring out the excess, and place it on the affected areas. Let it stay for 15 minutes, before taking it off. Once the pain is reduced, follow it up with a cold compress.
  • To 1 cup of hot water, add 2 teaspoons of dried rosemary and cover it with a lid. Let it steep for about 10 minutes, then strain it. Drink this tea thrice a day for best results.

9. Stretching muscles

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Stretching the sore muscles can help immensely in relieving muscle cramps.


  • Focus on the affected muscles and do a mild, static stretch for about 30 seconds at a time, followed by gently rubbing the affected area to help it relax.
  • Swimming also helps incredibly in relieving the pain and soreness caused by muscle cramps. Additionally, the cold water is helpful in alleviating the pain and inflammation.

10. Vitamin E

Vitamin E helps improve blood circulation, thus preventing muscle cramps.


  • Ingest vitamin E supplements to help prevent nocturnal leg cramps.

11. Warm compress

Exposing the affected muscles to heat helps in alleviating the pain and soreness caused by the muscle cramps. It helps increase the blood flow, thus relieving the cramp.


  • Place a hot washcloth or an electric heating pad on the affected muscles to find relief. Apply heat for about 20 minutes, before removing it. Rest for 20 minutes more, before repeating the process.

12. Yellow mustard

Yellow mustard is an amazingly easy, simple home remedy used to treat muscle cramps. It contains acetic acid, which is known to promote the production of acetylcholine in the body, a neurotransmitter that prompts muscles to work. In turn, it helps relieve the pain and the soreness in the muscles.


  • Consume 1 teaspoon of yellow mustard to help with the muscle cramps. You can wash it down with some warm milk if the taste gets to be too much.

Suggested read: All you need to know about treating bloating with home remedies

Additional tips

  • Drink lots of fluids through the day to keep yourself hydrated. Water, fresh fruit juices (sans sugar), vegetable juices are all amazing options.
  • Wear adequate warm clothing during winter to prevent muscle cramps.
  • Before going to bed, walk, stretch, or do some light exercise to help prevent any cramps. It will help warm your muscles, while helping improve blood circulation.
  • Drink a glass of warm milk every night before going to bed.
  • Include foods rich in vitamin A, E, magnesium, potassium, calcium in your daily dietary intake to prevent muscle cramps.
  • If you suffer from nocturnal muscle cramps, wear thin socks to help promote unrestricted blood flow. Additionally, use a pillow to keep your knees elevated while lying in bed, to prevent muscle cramps.

These are all the highly effective home remedies for muscle cramps that actually work to relieve the soreness and pain. For more updates on health tips and fitness secrets, subscribe to our newsletter today!

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Article Name
13 Highly Effective Home Remedies For Muscle Cramps
Muscle cramps cramping your style? Try these superbly effective home remedies for muscle cramps that actually WORK!
Chaitra Ramalingegowda

Chaitra Ramalingegowda

I fell in love with storytelling long before I knew what it was. Love well written stories, writing with passion, baking lip-smacking-finger-licking chocolate cakes, engaging movies, and home-cooked food. A true work-in-progress and a believer in the idiom 'all those who wander are not lost'. Twitter: @ChaitraRlg