Muscle Cramping

One of the most commonly-known symptoms of substance abuse or drug addiction is muscle cramping. It’s also known as muscle spasms. When the spasms start, you may feel an involuntary contraction of the muscles, which leads to severe pain around the area, similar to what occurs when someone is passing a kidney stone, or experiencing menstrual or gallbladder pain. When the pain gets worse, it can be linked to dystonias, another type of muscle cramping. If this is not quickly dealt with, it may lead to paralysis and other complications in the long term.

When you experience spasms or cramping of the skeletal muscles, it is likely a result of substance abuse, addiction to certain drugs and alcohol, or even withdrawal. This cramping could further prevent blood from properly flowing through the arms, neck, face, torso, back, and, legs. It will also become difficult for the chemicals that transmit signals to the brain to function effectively. This affects your entire wellbeing, making you unable to carry out your day to day activities.

The Signs of Muscle Cramping

Being able to identify the signs of muscle cramping will go a long way in helping you receive adequate treatment or therapy. If it happens to someone close to you, there are certain signs to watch out for. They are:

  • Repeated momentary contractions of the thigh, calf, arm or even eyelids
  • Pain in the muscles
  • Muscle Fasciculation
  • Tight and bulging muscles (which can be seen around the area you feel the contractions)
  • Changes in sensation, mood swings, or anxiety
  • Weakness
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When Do You Need to See a Professional for Muscle Cramping?

If you, or anyone you know, is experiencing muscle cramping, it’s always best to speak to a healthcare professional. This is because it might be a symptom of addiction to a particular substance or even a withdrawal symptom. In other cases, it could actually be due to dehydration, fatigue from overusing the muscles, stress, diarrhoea, narrowing of the arteries, chronic pain in the neck and back, or even diseases that affect the nervous system.

In cases where substance abuse or addiction might seem like the major underlying factor, it’s important to find out what is the exact cause, in order to make treatment easier. There is no better way to do this than to talk to a health professional.

Keep in mind that some people may show different signs of muscle cramping. From vomiting to nausea and extreme weakness, the signs vary from person to person. That is why it’s important for a doctor to know the history of the symptoms you (or your loved one) have, to enable them to make a proper diagnosis.

When you visit the health specialist, certain questions will be asked, such as: How frequently does the cramping happen? Are they random or following a particular pattern? How long does each cramping or spasm last? Does it only occur in a specific area of your body? And when did it all begin? Try to be accurate with your answers, as this will enable the specialist to correctly administer the right therapy for your symptoms.

That being said, whenever you feel pain in your muscles or a contraction around a particular area, don’t hesitate to consult a professional. It might be a result of other changes in the body, but as addiction can also cause such a side-effect, it should not be ruled out, so receiving professional guidance is preferable.

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