Muscle Spasms

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Hi all. New to the forum. I have both Fibro and RA. Since I was diagnosed with RA in 2016, I started to ignore the Fibro because I thought of it as a less dangerous issue. However, lately my RA has been under control (thankfully due to a great med), but my Fibro is acting up. All my muscles hurt and I've also been having severe spasms in my lower back. Muscle relaxants don't help, even high doses. I've also tried high doses of ionic magnesium which also doesn't help (but I take it anyway since Magnesium is so important for muscles). Some days (like all of this week), I cant walk more than 200 steps without going into full spasm. It's really impacted my life and led to weight gain which makes the spasms worse. Vicious cycle.

Do you all get muscle spasms and what do you do for them? Thanks.
 

RLG

Active member
Joined
Aug 2, 2020
Messages
65
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
07/2020
Country
US
State
MI
Hi, Leana. I'm new here, too. Muscle spasms were very bad for me for the past several months, unbearable in my thighs. The thigh muscles would get very hard and ropy feeling. My calves lock up on me and I often wake up screaming. A couple of times I've had a strange tightness, like banding, in my arms and shoulders. I feel like the muscle spasming is worse in legs and arms/shoulders with my nerve pain flares, or maybe circulatory issues when it is in my calves
I have tried so many things--ibuprofen, lidocaine Aspercreme and original Aspercreme, icing, heat, potassium, magnesium foam on my calves. Honestly, for me heat helps a lot. But no matter how much I already hurt, stretching and regular exercise help me the most. Even when I scream my way through it and it wipes me out and hurts after, the long term overall pain relief is necessary.
Please do keep trying to move. Gentle stretching is so good for us. I find as things get worse for me that long, slow, deep stretching helps so much. It takes 3 times as long as when I was young to fully stretch my muscles and joints, I have to be patient and dedicated.
Have you had your labs done lately? You could be having a deficiency. Try drinking a sport drink, like low sugar Gatorade, eat bananas, and sit in the sun for 15-20 minutes when ever you can--those all help me a little.
 

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Thanks so much RLG! Mine are only in my lower back/gluts area which is strange. I've tried electrolyte powder but I haven't been consistent with it so I'll give it a try again. I even had a neuromuscular test and everything was "fine". Since the results were normal, my doctors have kind of washed their hands of it and told me to go to a pain management doctor. Not to say that can't be helpful, but the last time I went to a pain doctor she just gave me painkillers. Not super helpful.

Exercise is so very important. I just have a hard time (like all of us) because of pain and fatigue. Honestly, fatigue is even a bigger deterrent to exercise than pain. I'm just so damn exhausted ALL the time. But I will try and muster the energy to at least do my PT excercises and light stretching. Thank you for the reminder of how important this is. Sometimes I get into victim mode and forget to do self care.
 

Maxsmom

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
20
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
09/1984
Country
US
State
NM
Hi, Leana. I'm new here, too. Muscle spasms were very bad for me for the past several months, unbearable in my thighs. The thigh muscles would get very hard and ropy feeling. My calves lock up on me and I often wake up screaming. A couple of times I've had a strange tightness, like banding, in my arms and shoulders. I feel like the muscle spasming is worse in legs and arms/shoulders with my nerve pain flares, or maybe circulatory issues when it is in my calves
I have tried so many things--ibuprofen, lidocaine Aspercreme and original Aspercreme, icing, heat, potassium, magnesium foam on my calves. Honestly, for me heat helps a lot. But no matter how much I already hurt, stretching and regular exercise help me the most. Even when I scream my way through it and it wipes me out and hurts after, the long term overall pain relief is necessary.
Please do keep trying to move. Gentle stretching is so good for us. I find as things get worse for me that long, slow, deep stretching helps so much. It takes 3 times as long as when I was young to fully stretch my muscles and joints, I have to be patient and dedicated.
Have you had your labs done lately? You could be having a deficiency. Try drinking a sport drink, like low sugar Gatorade, eat bananas, and sit in the sun for 15-20 minutes when ever you can--those all help me a little.
I agree with the banding feeling in the arms and shoulders - decided maybe yoga for 10 min - it’s annoying and bothersome most days to have your limbs in a state of rebellion lol
 

RLG

Active member
Joined
Aug 2, 2020
Messages
65
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
07/2020
Country
US
State
MI
I agree with the banding feeling in the arms and shoulders - decided maybe yoga for 10 min - it’s annoying and bothersome most days to have your limbs in a state of rebellion lol
LOL We have to laugh about it sometimes. I call it invisible little terrorists. Evil little rats chewing on me. Sneaky little pain ninjas.
 

RLG

Active member
Joined
Aug 2, 2020
Messages
65
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
07/2020
Country
US
State
MI
Thanks so much RLG! Mine are only in my lower back/gluts area which is strange. I've tried electrolyte powder but I haven't been consistent with it so I'll give it a try again. I even had a neuromuscular test and everything was "fine". Since the results were normal, my doctors have kind of washed their hands of it and told me to go to a pain management doctor. Not to say that can't be helpful, but the last time I went to a pain doctor she just gave me painkillers. Not super helpful.

Exercise is so very important. I just have a hard time (like all of us) because of pain and fatigue. Honestly, fatigue is even a bigger deterrent to exercise than pain. I'm just so damn exhausted ALL the time. But I will try and muster the energy to at least do my PT excercises and light stretching. Thank you for the reminder of how important this is. Sometimes I get into victim mode and forget to do self care.
I am so sorry, Leana. It's challenging in ways many others can't imagine. We have to make choices every day about how we use our bodies and be realistic about what we can accomplish knowing there is a price to pay either way. Ex: do I workout today (because I still love it, it's good for me, and it helps in the long run), and accept the reality that it will be the ONLY thing I do today--and may wind up so fatigued from it I have to go to bed for 2-3 hours. Or, do I not exercise today in order to be able to do physical labor today (because I have financial needs and medical bills, and dangit I want to get out of this house and be a little productive). If I do both....oh boy. If I do everything my body, job, and family require of me now, through the end of August, well, I can probably kiss September goodbye.
Totally agree about painkillers. Only had to use heavy opiates a couple of times for very serious health crises and HATED it.
This is not in your head, Leana. Your pain is real. Your symptoms are real. Just because we/doctors/science haven't figured out what is causing it (genetics, virus, etc) doesn't mean it's psychosomatic or untreatable. And it is absolutely possible to have other conditions involved, like arthritis, nerve damage, inflammatory bowel, you name it.
And you are not alone :)
 

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Thanks Maxsmom and RLG. So true about having to choose between different activities to avoid exhaustion.

I don't hate painkillers (I'm a recovering addict), in fact I like them too much. However, they are not a long term solution for chronic pain, regardless of whether you can take them properly. I was hoping she would have more tools in her toolkit.

It's hard for people to wrap their heads around chronic pain and fatigue since there is no endpoint. In the case of fibro, there is no definitive cause, which makes it even harder to explain. But I know my reality, and if people don't undertstand/can't sympathize, that's on them.

Thanks for your support.
 

DizzyLizzy

New member
Joined
Feb 26, 2020
Messages
6
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/1995
Country
US
State
MO
For what it's worth: I take magnesium every night for restless leg, it seems to help with the muscle spasms not just
in legs but all over. I also do tai chi, which is great for balance and muscle tone. I try to walk at least 3 miles a
day, sometimes I can manage 6. Honestly, it often feels like I'm just going on muscle memory, but once the
momentum gets going, it's semi-automatic. I am also chronically fatigued and all the rest, but force myself when I'm
able. It's a delicate balance, isn't it? I guess the ultimate arbiter is our bodies. It's day by day, isn't it? I try to be
focused and optimistic, find joy in so many "small" things. I also know full well sometimes it's hard to be joyful
with chronic pain. I DO find laughing the ultimate elixir, though :O) I watch "Dr. Strangelove" when I'm struggling to
smile. "Undercover Brother" is another favorite. Over and out! I hope you ALL are feeling as good as possible today,
thinking of all my sisters and brothers in this condition. Please keep moving, feeling, and talking!
 

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Thanks Lizzy. 6 miles is amazing! Last week I did 4 miles and that felt like a huge accomplishment. With my regular RA/fibro pain I can take long walks, but not with the spasms. Once I had to sit on the floor in the middle of Target they were so bad and I've had to sit down on sidewalks before as well. However, some days I don't have an issue. It's really strange. Magnesium is great but it doesn't seem to help the spasms. I take high doses of ionic Magnesium (the kind that doesn't give you loose stools) daily.

I like to watch Larry David when I'm down but I know he's not for everyone. :)
 

Sabina

New member
Joined
Aug 6, 2020
Messages
4
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
09/2010
Country
US
State
IL
I have Fibro & I get leg cramps at night & restless leg syndrome. We've had a very hot summer & I do think I became dehydrated. I drink Smart Water that you can get anywhere & Trader Joe's makes a good one also. My sister, who has restless leg, told me to drink tonic water. I have tried it & it really does seem to work. (drink a 1/2 cup to 1 cup) during the day as it can keep you up at night). I also rub my legs & feet with Life-Flo Magnesium lotion (before bed) that you can get on Amazon. I also take 400-500 mg of Magnesium Glycinate after dinner.

Best of luck to you!
 

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Thanks Sabrina. I have restless legs as well. I put magnesium oil on my legs and the bottom of my feet last night and it really worked!

The spasms are something else entirely. They stop me dead in my tracks.
 

sunkacola

Very helpful member
Joined
Dec 2, 2016
Messages
734
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
00/0000
Country
Uni
State
Somewhere
My best success in handling muscle cramps and leg twitching and spasms is one or more of the following:

taking a calcium/magnesium supplement
using a TENS machine on my legs
Medical cannabis
 

LeanaBeana

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
Messages
16
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
06/2001
Country
US
State
CA
Thanks sunkacola. I have a tens unit and it does help. I just need to be better about using it every day.
 

Creola17

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2018
Messages
28
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
00/0000
Country
US
State
Nv
I get woken up by leg and foot cramps so bad I have found that drinking coconut water and a spray called Theraworx. Walmart and Amazon carry it. Comes in foam or spray, as soon as you rub it on they stop! You can pit it on before you go to bed or when you wake up to hopefully avoid cramps.
For my back spasms I put it on over my pain lotion from the base of my spine to about mid way up.
It might not work for everyone but it works for me. Worth a try I think.
If you want to try making pain cream I can share my recipe. I use essential oils and pot infused coconut oil.
 
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