What causes leg and calf cramps at night
Only imagine that you are lying down and your lower leg seizes. This kind of pain is intense enough so to make you want to scream and it doesn’t let up and your muscle is hard to the touch. When you will try to move your leg, it kind of feels paralyzed. Does this sound familiar?
In accordance to American Family Physician, the nocturnal leg and calf cramp can affect up to 60 percent of adults and many times it is referred to as muscle spasms or Charley horses, and they occur when one or more of the muscles in the leg tighten involuntarily.
Having these leg cramps most often affects the gastrocnemius muscle (calf muscle – calf cramp) which spans the back of each leg from the ankle to the knee. But, they may also affect the muscles at the front of each thigh (quadriceps) and the back of each thigh (hamstrings).
You might be awake or asleep when a leg cramp happens but most of the time, the muscle relaxes in less than 10 minutes. Your leg can kind of feel sore or tender for up to a day afterward. Having often calf cramp at night can disrupt your sleep.
Experiencing leg cramps during sleep are more common among women and older adults.