Spasms occur when muscles in the body contract, usually briefly, but often painfully. They are involuntary, and can be so severe at times that the result may be torn ligaments or tendons. Spasms in the feet can be accompanied by cramping, fatigue, numbness, twitching, and other symptoms. What happens when spasms in the feet occur? And what can cause these spasms in the feet?
In addition to somewhat normal causes of spasms, such as dehydration or muscle overwork, spasms in the feet can occur for a number of reasons. Sometimes the cause is neurological. Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and Huntington’s disease can all cause spasms in the feet, along with muscle spasms in other parts of the body. Thyroid disorders can be responsible, too, for spasms in the feet. Kidney disorders and dialysis can also contribute to foot spasms. Deficiencies in magnesium, calcium, or vitamin D are often factors in spasms of the feet. On the other hand, too much phosphate in the body can also cause these to occur. Pregnancy, exercise, and hyperventilation are also contributing factors. Nerve damage, whether to a single nerve, nerve group, or multiple nerves connected to muscle is another major reason for spasms of the feet.
For causes related to vitamin disorders, the answer is fairly obvious in that increased intake of Vitamin D, calcium, and magnesium can bring relief from foot spasms; likewise, reducing phosphate intake can also help. Certain stretching exercises, to help keep your muscles relaxed and loose are good. Sports and other physical activity, while beneficial, can result in more harm if overdone. The trick is finding the right balance. If pregnancy causes spasms in the feet to occur, the birth of the baby may cause the spasms to disappear. Dehydration as a cause can be corrected by staying hydrated. Drink enough water throughout the day, especially when exercising or doing other strenuous activity.
If home remedies don’t help, it is time to see a healthcare practitioner. He or she may run some tests, including blood work, to check out your calcium levels. Often a lack of vitamin D is a specific cause for spasms of the feet or hands. Hormone and kidney function tests may need to be done, along with other tests for neurological disorders to rule out that possibility.
Nerve damage specific to the area can sometimes be dealt with through use of an orthopedic surgeon. Neuropathy, the term for nerve damage, can also be dealt with at times through proper medications or other supplements. Remember, if something such as spasms in the feet doesn’t go away on it’s own, or with home remedies, it is important to see a physician to rule out other possibilities.