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Old 02-02-2011, 11:06 AM   #1
bjje
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muscle spasm

I have a muscle spasm. right now it's in the middle of my back on the left but it can be in random muscles from my neck down to the lower back. They have a stereotypical pattern. You might be doing yoga or sports and have a good time, go to bed and the next day you might be brushing your teeth or getting up from a chair and bang! Immediate excruciating pain for one muscle. It will last 8 days getting slowly better. If I was lucky enough to get ice on it fast it can be much lessened or even stopped altogether. If I was unlucky enough to take a hot shower to relax it than it will be much worse later from increased inflamation. A chiropractor might adjust me or use ultrasound to "break down the connective tissue" and these will likewise make it much worse. Massage has no effect. Stretching is tough but has no effect. A Doc will put me in a neck brace and give me drugs but no help. Long term attention to proper alignment and stretching is no protection. The physiologists say that it is little damages with stretch receptors telling the muscle to contract, making the receptors more unhappy, a great positive feedback loop gets going and bang. It's always like this. the next day is the most vulnerable time and I always rest the next day after a public Yoga class.
Can anyone shed some more light on the workings of this process and have anything to add?
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Old 02-02-2011, 03:07 PM   #2
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you did right... ice would help with inflammation.

What sport do you do? Do u have a routine everyday exercise program?
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Old 02-03-2011, 03:14 AM   #3
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If I may paraphrase, for my own understanding...
you have muscle spasms in the back body from the cervical spine to the sacrum, these are periodic but onset tends to be one day following strenuous exercise AND nothing under the sun helps other than ice, if you are speedy enough to apply it promptly. Is that correct?

And since this particular post exposes my density, might you elaborate on exactly what you are seeking from our members/community?
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:06 AM   #4
bjje
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I'm just describing the pattern that I see in myself as well as many others to see if anyone has any other observations or practices that might be useful to this. I'm just trying to educate myself. I don't teach, just have my own practice, and was told by a teacher that this group had a good handle on body mechanics. Sorry to intrude.
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Old 02-03-2011, 04:06 PM   #5
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Asking for a clarification is not synonymous with telling you you're intruding. Perhaps that's merely a regional difference.

Muscle spams have several "causes" and I'm only initially referencing the one's that are established by peer-reviewed journals and what many call "modern science". Either the cells of the muscles are not receiving the proper fuel (potassium, magnesium, glucose), they are being over worked, or there's an impediment/dysfunction in the nervous system.

Muscles basically spasm to prevent you from doing further damage to them. They seize up like a splint or cast in order to protect by immobilizing. If you are having them (spasms) regularly then you can try moving from simple to complex. The first level is amending your diet which means a focus on nutrient-rich foods and an avoidance of that which leaches minerals from the body (read: coffee). Almonds, cashews, soybeans, and deep green leafy vegetables are magnesium-rich foods.

The second level is amending your practice. If that practice is daily and varied then it may be its intensity, either by itself or in conjunction with other "things" you do. If it is not varied then perhaps a shift in one's practice so that the body's needs are met day in and day out rather than providing it only one thing over and over again.

One might also consider looking at immune system function to make sure everything that is supposed to be operational is operating. There are a variety of things that effect the nervous system (including environmental toxins and dis-ease) which could in theory account for ongoing muscle spams.


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Old 02-03-2011, 06:04 PM   #6
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Muscle spasm in middle back left side is one of the muscle spasms that I hate the most because it seems like a heart attack cramp in my vivid imagination and I am forced to take short breaths because a large deep breath hurts and may trigger a more painful spasm. This type of spasm has happened a few times when I've done some tense risky work and sometimes involving back work (shoveling, jack hammer, etc) and what I choose to do when this occurs is sit down, relax until I can take normal size breaths, and I would also take some ibuprofen type pain reliever to reduce inflammation and a Tylenol type med to reduce the pain of the spasm, or if I have no meds then I just try to relax.

Inner Athlete's advice on diet is important because metabolism and physiology is affected by our nutrition and it can reduce the occurrences and severity of any spasm attack (some damage from spasms have taken as long as a few months to recover on me, lucky those were in areas that didn't affect breathing), so you should consider looking into 'low inflammation diets', green smoothies, and try to be properly hydrated, etc.
Best wishes, Gil
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Old 02-08-2011, 12:19 PM   #7
bjje
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I would bet that something that lasts months is more a tendon insertion rather than a spasm. I do hate the ones in the mid back that hurt when you breathe.
I mention the ice just to show something that can tell me something. Ice works by two unrelated ways. Fast ice can end a spasm immediately because it is a trigger to the receptors and it is magic if done soon enough. Ice later just helps the inflamatory progression but will not trigger you out of a spasm. There's lots of talk about what should trigger a release of a muscle based on theory and even more speculation about the causes but I would like to hear examples of something that actually has worked for someone. That's what I'm fishing for.
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Old 02-21-2011, 04:46 PM   #8
elliot.rigsby
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I had muscular problems similar to those you describe. I was introduced to a cranial Osteopath who has helped immensely. Whilst I don't fully understand what he does he started by working on my overall body function and got everything back into balance before moving on to the mechanics of the muscular system. I have seen some miraculous changes.

I would definitely recommend this as a good option.

Satnam.
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Old 02-22-2011, 02:40 AM   #9
Jolla
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I have found a proven, all natural, method for you that you have likely never heard of before.
Carry mini packets of mustard whenever you are planning to exercise.
If you feel a muscle spasm / cramp hit, open up one of those packets and slurp it down! Wash down the mustard with water.
Repeat step 2 every 2 minutes until the muscle spasm / cramp is gone.

Last edited by David; 02-22-2011 at 04:25 AM. Reason: Removed link
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjje View Post
I have a muscle spasm. right now it's in the middle of my back on the left but it can be in random muscles from my neck down to the lower back. They have a stereotypical pattern. You might be doing yoga or sports and have a good time, go to bed and the next day you might be brushing your teeth or getting up from a chair and bang! Immediate excruciating pain for one muscle. It will last 8 days getting slowly better. If I was lucky enough to get ice on it fast it can be much lessened or even stopped altogether. If I was unlucky enough to take a hot shower to relax it than it will be much worse later from increased inflamation. A chiropractor might adjust me or use ultrasound to "break down the connective tissue" and these will likewise make it much worse. Massage has no effect. Stretching is tough but has no effect. A Doc will put me in a neck brace and give me drugs but no help. Long term attention to proper alignment and stretching is no protection. The physiologists say that it is little damages with stretch receptors telling the muscle to contract, making the receptors more unhappy, a great positive feedback loop gets going and bang. It's always like this. the next day is the most vulnerable time and I always rest the next day after a public Yoga class.
Can anyone shed some more light on the workings of this process and have anything to add?
I have been through this syndrome. The "without any reason" muscle pull. Early morning is the favourite time to strike. I got over it by regular asans.

do you do any asans regularly ? By regularly I mean daily ? The stretching asans halasan, paschimottan, bhujang and Shalab would help. But in view of the delicate condition of your muscles, you need to do this under a qualified teacher who initiates you into the half positions first until such time as the muscles strengthen. The spasm could be triggered in case of occasional exercise. You could even go into physiotherapy where they would use positions very similar to the asans and the advantage would be that this would be under supervision. Once you are in better shape you could switch to the asans.
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