Ever pull a muscle? Want to know what to do if it happens again? Here is some first aid advice to help you if you have experienced a pulled muscle.
Obviously, whatever you were doing that caused the pulled muscle should be stopped as soon as possible. Exercising, playing sports, or anything that would put strain on your muscles should be avoided.
Ice reduces blood flow and inflammation so there is less swelling, bruising, and tissue trauma. A pulled muscle causes some degree of bleeding in the muscle tissue. Be careful to put a towel between the ice and your skin to prevent frostbite. Don’t leave the ice on for longer than 20 minutes at a time. Do not use ice if you have a history of cold sensitivity.
There is no substitute for rest. The muscle needs to heal. Rest as much as you can and propped the strain up without causing undo stress.
You can use over-the-counter analgesics but avoid over the counter anti-inflammatory drugs. Since they can cause more bleeding into the muscle and aggravate swelling and pain, anti-inflammatory drugs such as naproxen and ibuprofen should be avoided. Try low doses of acetaminophen, like what is contained in Tylenol instead.
If the pain from the pulled muscle doesn’t improve after three days, there may be more than a pulled muscle causing your pain. See a physician.
Make sure you stretch the next time you decide to engage in physical activity. Stretch before and after any sort of strenuous activity. In fact, a daily stretching routine is a good idea anyway.
Using heat for a pulled muscle acutely can aggravate swelling and bleeding into the muscle. Stick to using ice unless your physician advises otherwise.
Massaging the area every couple of hours will help to decrease swelling and increase blood flow. Lightly massage the area with your hands, but make sure not to massage to hard to prevent further injury.
The treatment for a pulled muscle is simple. A few common sense tips can get you back on track. Ice the strained muscle intermittently and get some much needed rest.
More expert advice about Injuries
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