Muscle Strains

Muscle strains and cramps can result from vigorous physical activity and exercise.


A strain is an injury in which muscle fibers are pulled, stretched, or torn during physical activity.

Muscle Strains Treatment

  • Do not massage the muscle; let it rest
  • Elevate a strained arm or leg to prevent swelling.
  • Apply a cold cloth or compress to the muscle. To “ice” the injury, wrap ice in a clean cloth and apply to the injury for a maximum of 20 minutes every hour. Repeat intermittently for 24 hours.
  • After 24 hours, use a warm wet compress to soothe the muscle.
  • Ibuprofen and/or acetaminophen can help ease pain and reduce swelling.


Cramps—painful and usually sudden spasms of one or more muscles—can occur following overworking of a muscle or may happen spontaneously during sleep.

Cramps Treatment

  • If your child has a cramp, help him gently stretch out the muscle; immediately.
  • Massage the knotted muscle for several minutes.
  • Follow the massage with a warm bath, a warm wet compress, or a heating pad.