Muscle Strain - What is it? Strains are a pulled muscle, basically you over-did it. You
So what do you do about it?
Depending on the degree of damage, most of the time this can be treated with rest, local hydrotherapy, nutrient and homeopathic support. If you completely tore the muscle, as noted by a bulge over the injury site and inability to move the injured area (because the muscle that usually performs that movement broken), you should seek emergency treatment and be evaluated for surgical intervention. Come see me once you're discharged and we'll work on healing that muscle and surgical site. :)
Mild to Moderate muscle strains occur after or during strenuous activity. It'll be painful, tender, there might be bruising, swelling and you won't want to move it.
1) REST: Don't use it, your body needs time to heal. If that means you have to stay in bed, then do that. You can use some ice to help the initial pain and swelling, but after the first 24 hrs it won't offer any additional help. Instead start local hydrotherapy.
2) Local hydrotherapy: If you can't make it into the office for constitutional treatments, you can do this instead. Alternating applications of warm and cold will help stimulate circulation to the area which will bring helpful white blood cells and nutrients to help clean up and repair the damage. Alternate with applications of very warm water (don't burn yourself) for 5 minutes, and follow with cold (not ice cold!) for 30 sec-1 min. Alternate 3 times hot-cold, hot-cold, hot-cold and repeat several times during the day.
In office treatments allow us to use additional therapies including diathermy and high-frequency currents, which help to relax the muscles, increase blood flow and speed healing. (book now)
3) Epsom salt soaks or compresses: Fill your bathtub with very warm water and Epsom salt (1-2 cups). Soak and relax. The magnesium sulfate will help relax the muscles and reduce swelling and inflammation. If it's a neck muscle, and you can't get that part of your body in the tub (or don't have a tub), create a compress by filling your sink with hot water and Epsom salt (1/4 cup or so) and soak a washcloth, squeeze it out and place over the affected area. Once it starts to cool, get it warm in the water again and place over the area again. Repeat as needed.
4) Nutrients: Magnesium and Calcium are the most important for supporting muscles. Magnesium adult doses are typically 200-800 mg per day, or to bowel tolerance as too much will cause loose stools. Calcium adult dosages are 1200-1500 mg per day. Take these with food as stomach acid is necessary for proper absorption.
Muscle Calm can be helpful if you're having muscle spasms with the strain. The combination of herbs and magnesium help relax the muscles.
Mag. Phos. 6X helps reduce muscle spasms and muscle pains, esp. when the pain is shooting.
Arnica 30C or 200C will help if the area has the sensation of being bruised and beaten.
Bryonia 30C or 200C when the pain is worse with the slightest motion and you're very thirsty.
Rhus Tox 30C or 200C here the pain is worse with initial movement but improves with continued movement. Stiffness is the most noticeable symptom which indicates this remedy will be helpful.
If these recommendations don't help, or your symptoms are getting worse, give us a call and we'll assess it together. It's possible that you have a sprain and not a strain or another injury that needs a different treatment.
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