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Sore Muscles and Joints

Sore Muscles and Joints

Soreness in muscles and joints is not considered a serious problem, as it goes away on its own in most of the cases. At times, however, it can be a sign of some underlying condition, which can be far more severe; and therefore it is in your best interests, to opt for a thorough diagnosis of the same.
Abhijit Naik
Last Updated: Apr 23, 2018
Soreness in muscles and joints is a problem that you are likely to encounter after exhausting physical activity, especially if you are indulging in any such activity after a long time. On the very first day of weight training, you encounter soreness in all the muscles that you work on. This is referred to as the Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS), which is caused due to accumulation of lactic acid in the various parts of the body.
If the muscles are not used for a long time, they undergo certain biochemical changes, which causes them to shorten. In this situation, any sudden physical activity, regardless of whether it is simple jogging or weight training, hurts the muscles or strains them, and leaves them sore and inflamed.
Causes
As we mentioned earlier, indulging in a rigorous physical activity, after a long gap is a common cause of muscle soreness and joint pain. This, however, is not a major problem as the soreness in this case, is usually attributed to lactic acid buildup, and is known to go on its own. Other than this, an individual can experience soreness in muscles for various reasons, ranging from aging to some underlying medical complication.
  • Studies have revealed that, the deficiency of calcium and vitamin D, which are important for our bones, is one of the major causes of soreness in various parts of the body.
  • Sports related injuries such as sprains and strains, ligament injuries, muscle tear, dislocated joints, etc., can also lead to this condition; and hence it is necessary to give due importance to warm up before the activity and cooling down after it.
  • Wearing footwear which doesn't support your body, or the activity you are doing, can also trigger sore joints and muscles in your body.
  • Other than aging, people suffering from health conditions, like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, obesity or simple flu, are also subjected to soreness in muscles and joints.
Symptoms
Even though it is a symptomatic condition, which, in itself, hints at some underlying problem, there are certain symptoms which are often associated with sore muscles or joints. Most common among these include tenderness in the affected area and bouts of pain whilst trying to move the affected part of the body. In some cases, the condition is also accompanied by fever and swelling as the defense mechanism of the body comes into play.
If soreness is caused as a result of some underlying ailment, like rheumatoid arthritis or fibromyalgia, it is accompanied by the symptoms of the said ailment. At times, people complain about experiencing sore muscles and joints for no reason, unaware of the fact that it is a symptom of some underlying medical condition; which can be quite severe.
Treatment
Though this condition is not usually a matter of concern, it can, at times, immobilize the person for a brief period; thus causing a great deal of inconvenience. In order to avoid this, the treatment process has to be initiated at the earliest. The treatment options range from some simple remedies, like applying heat or cold, stretching, good amount of rest, to over the counter pain killers or muscle relaxants.
  • Applying heat or cold helps in reducing the inflammation of the muscles.
  • Stretching is an effective method of treating muscle soreness, especially if it is caused by physical exertion.
  • You can also resort to massage, which increases the blood flow in the body, thus providing all the parts of the body with essential nutrients.
  • In case of sprains and strains, ligament injury or muscle tear, the simplest cure is to take ample rest. These injuries require some time to heal, and resting accelerates the healing process.

If the condition is attributed to some underlying condition, the person has to undergo the treatment of this underlying ailment to get rid of chronic soreness. Similarly, if arthritis or obesity is the cause, opting for arthritis treatment or weight loss can help in eliminating the joint pain associated with this condition. Though the chances are relatively rare, the person may even have to opt for a surgery as the last option at times.
Once the underlying cause of sore muscles and joints are identified, dealing with this condition becomes fairly easy. However, it is worth noting that it is possible to prevent this condition in the first place. Some simple precautionary measures, such as drinking plenty of water, stretching before intense physical activities or practicing a healthy and active lifestyle, can help you make sure that you keep this condition at bay.
Disclaimer: This article is purely for the purpose of providing information, and should not be used as a substitute for medical advice.