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Thread: Leg Cramps & Sleepless Nights

  1. #1

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    Exclamation Leg Cramps & Sleepless Nights

    Hi there I'm 31wks and I get the worst leg cramps. They are so bad that I wake up with tears in my eyes. I end up hitting DH until he wakes up just so he can rub my leg and tell me to relax. I've also had the pleasure of waking up at 2am and staying awake. Not very fun when you work until 12am. Anyways anyone have any suggestions that would lead to a somewhat full nights sleep and no leg cramps???



    Marie

  2. #2

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    I went through a stage of those - I would wake up screaming!!

    Anyway, I realised that a lot of the time, they were caused by pointing my toes/foot in my sleep (eg. if the covers got stuck on my foot). So, firstly, I used pillows at the end of the bed (under the covers) to stop the covers getting stuck on my foot. Then, when I had a cramp, I would point my foot upwards (towards my knees), to stretch it out.

    I also sleep with a pillow between my legs - this helps with the aches in my thighs, but not the cramps in my calves.

    Finally, I have heard that increasing salt is supposed to reduce your susceptibility to cramping - but I didn't try this.

    HTH

    Ez.

  3. #3

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    tie a piece of wool around your ankles, this is apparently supposed to help ease the cramps, I did it in 2nd preg & it helped....

  4. #4

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    I also went through a stage of cramps which was very ouchy but then I started getting bad heartburn so started taking Rennie and the cramps eased up. Not sure if it was coincidence or the magnesium in the tablets but I haven't had a major cramp for months. Every now and then I will feel a niggle and stretch my leg out to stop it or give it a massage.

    I hope they ease for you soon. You can feel the cramp for days when it is major.

  5. #5

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    I had these really bad too with DS. Nothing, not even rubbing would make them go away, i just had to wait out the pain. But perhaps youre not having enough salt in your diet? Im not a big salt eater either and i think that was my problem.

  6. #6

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    I have already started waking up to leg cramps. they are not fun!

    I have been told potassium and calcium both help (makes sense I guess, our muscles use sodium, potassium and calcium to contract and since it is pretty rare to have a sodium deficit, potassium and calcium could definitely help) I was also told that I should try stretching out my calves really thoroughly before going to sleep. I find that I get them on nights when I have had a really busy day on my feet so if I have been busy I stretch my calves out really well and eat a banana for an evening snack.

  7. #7

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    Ezz totally said what I was going to say
    I find if I wake up, have a stretch and point my toes I start to feel the burn so I then stretch my calf and point my toes up... lukcy enough if stops it in its tracks!

    And with the salt try using the iodised salt and any natural fruits ect that contain lots of magnesium

    One thing I can confirm is they stop pretty much the moment baby arrives!! :P doesnt help you now I know but something to look forward too!!

    Good luck and hang in there
    xoxoxooxoxox

  8. #8

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    thanks guys I'll be try these ideas out!!! I'm tired of waking up and I'm sure that my DH would love to stop getting smacked in the face.

  9. #9

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    I have too smacked my husband awake to get rid of a cramp. I have had agonising cramps and just dull ache in legs all night for the last trimester. Like Tinsel once I started taking Rennie for heart burn they got a bit better. If i feel one coming now I just stretch my leg as far as it will go and stick my finger in where the cramp is coming and it seems to go before it really takes hold. Good Luck. I have also heard having a banana for potassium but unfortunately cannot stomach bananas so have not tried that.

  10. #10

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    what is rennie i've never heard of it????

  11. #11

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    Mummyof2tob...

    Lack of Magnesium is probably why you are getting the cramps - Rennie which are similar to mylanta contain magnesium, which is why they work too.
    Dont increase salt in your diet as this will only make the cramps worse.

    My sister is a footy trainer and when the guys come of the field they get a rub down with a magnesium cream and also a leture about dehydration as this also contributes.

    Try thinking back to the days that you get the cramos the worse, are you doing more physical excercise (ie loosing more fluid), not drinking enough or eating a particulay salty meal?

    I find that stretching before bed (i have not git a cramp since increasing my fluid intake and using a heart burn relief) also helps. Make sure you are drinking enough H2O during the day

    HTH

    ETA: when you get a cramp - get out of bed and walk around and stretch it out - very painful, but will reduce what you feel the next day

  12. #12

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    ok girls, I'm in here with the same dilemma. I get the cramps now and the restless legs. I am eating rennie like lollies due to heartburn and I try to ensure I drink plenty of water (tho since I finished work and hence have cut back the water, it's gotten worse). I'm finding it hard to sleep and keep waking Dh cause I am restless. I was told to take iron and I eat bannanas (not a lot of them, might up that a notch too), what else can u suggest? I don't usually get full on cramps as I know the signs and stop them, but the restless legs are driving me up the wall!

  13. #13

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    Stretch legs before bed. If your partner is up for it, get him to give you leg massage before you go to sleep.

    I've also been taking magnesium supplements to help my muscles relax and not had any big problems with leg cramps since. I did have a tiny weeny little toe cramp this morning, it was so cute!

    I was having pretty bad cramps. To the point I think I pulled a calf muscle cause my calf hurt for a good 3 days after....

  14. #14

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    Get someone to massage you or go and pay for one - get someone that can do pg massage though with belly support... lying on your side is not the best way to have a massage.
    I get restless arms - due to the tension in my shoulders and upper back - had a massage from my wonderful sister and havent had restless arms since.
    Magnesium rub is also avaiable from chemist and health food shops - its called SCHUESSLERS Tissue Salts Cream (they also make the oral supps too) rubbing/massaging this in the affected area will also help.

    Sometimes though you cannot get rid of the cramps, just lessent the symptoms, but do make sure that you stretch.
    Be careful with the bananas as too many can increase your potassium and cause heart arrhythmias.

    Hope this helps

  15. #15

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    I had these cramps quite regularly when pregnant with DS. Took magnesium tablets and the relief was almost instant. It definitely works for some people.

  16. #16

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    I've tried the pointing the toes in the other direction and so far it's been working. but now the heartburn dear god it feels like someone is lighting a match in my throat lol. i'll have to try those rennie tablets you ladies keep talking about. hope you ladies have a good one and don't work to hard.

  17. #17

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    I had to up my bananas (potassium) and take a magnesuim and zinc combo from blackmores. I found they were so bad a few times I stretched the opposite way so hard in a desperate bid to make them go away that I pulled muscles many times.

    Yoga helped too.

  18. #18
    frankie Guest

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    Hey guys,

    I too got real bad cramps and freaked my dp by screaming in the middle of the night, poor darling thought i was in early labour. so i upped my salt intake thanks to hot chips and i drink milk every morning. I read in my preg book that a banana milk shake every morning keeps those cramps away. But the milk and cheese sandwiches work like a treat for me.

    My Mum gave me another great tip for women who are lactose intolerant like her bring a bath towel with you to bed when you get cramps hold the far ends of the towel one in each hand and push the sole of your foot right down the middle of the towel real hard it will ease the cramp straight away,I also do this with my partner by pressing real hard on the palm of his hand with the sole of my foot.
    THESE TIPS WORK LIKE A DREAM FOR ME.
    Good luck mate!

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