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What to Do about Charley Horse Pain

Updated: Jul 30, 2020

The world is full of amazing creatures, and the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans houses some of the best. With an emphasis on preservation and natural habitats for the animals, this zoo is one of the best in the country. Enjoy a stroll through the exhibits and up the Monkey Hill. The exercise is great for kids and adults alike, though if you’re out of shape, you may be prone to cramping muscles. Charley horse pain can happen to anyone and can stop you in your tracks. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent foot cramps and alleviate the discomfort when they arise.


Many different issues can cause foot cramps. Muscle fatigue is a common culprit, particularly if you’re also dehydrated. Poor circulation, diabetes, and obesity increase your risk for cramps. Flat feet, worn out shoes, previous injuries, and vitamin imbalances may be factors as well. Knowing this may help you prevent shooting pains through your arches during activities.


Make sure you stretch before and after activities. This helps loosen tight tissues and keeps them from shortening and stiffening after exercising. Stretching before you go to bed and when you wake up in the morning may help as well. Also, wear appropriately supportive shoes when you’re active. Stay hydrated, especially when you’re exercising or spending time outside. Eating high potassium and calcium foods may help with vitamin imbalances.

Still, what do you do if you develop a foot cramp in spite of these precautions? There are a few easy self-treatments that can help:

  1. Massage the foot – Gently but firmly rub the painful muscle. If you have a heating pad nearby, try applying it to release stiff muscles.

  2. Stretch it out – Pull the foot or toes backward in a flexed position, or try the wall stretch. This loosens up the muscles in the feet that are tightening.

  3. Walk around – Walking improves circulation and stretches out tight tissues. Try walking through a mild cramp to help your foot relax.

  4. Drink more – Consume more water and electrolytes. This should help your muscles function more efficiently.

If you frequently have trouble with charley horse pain, you may have other foot health issues that need to be addressed. Let Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC in Metairie, LA, help you take care of your painful feet. Just call (504) 708-4810 or use the website to make an appointment with us.

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