Myalgia symptoms and muscle pain caused by excessive exertion, trauma, and viral infections can be reduced by a healthy body weight, diet, and exercise. Myalgia is a common complaint among adults, and just about everyone will experience some level of muscle pain in their lives. But when muscle pain becomes a frequent occurrence and interrupts your daily life that is when it can be a real problem, so finding effective treatments is necessary.
Muscles are made up of protein fibers, which lengthen and contract to assist in movement. There are three different types of muscles: skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle and smooth muscle which can act involuntary or voluntary. Cardiac and smooth muscles are commonly involuntary and skeletal muscles are voluntary, meaning we have control over their movement.
Although myalgia isn’t generally life-threatening, as mentioned, it is a nuisance. It’s important to take the necessary steps in order to prevent it or properly treat it, so you are not bogged down by muscle pain.
Myalgia (muscle pain) common causes, signs, and symptoms
There are four main types of myalgia with varying causes. Types of myalgia include: epidemic myalgia (caused by a viral infection), fibromyalgia (cause unknown but associated with sleep disorders and lupus), trapezius myalgia (caused by long hours in front of the computer), and polymyalgia rheumatica (anti-inflammatory disorder in individuals over the age of 50).
Common causes of muscle pain are stress, tension, overuse, and injury. Muscle pain is often found to be a symptom for many other ailments as well. Common ailments that can contribute to muscle pain include chronic fatigue syndrome, dystonia, hypothyroidism, influenza, lupus, Lyme disease, medications, muscle strain or rupture, muscle cramp, post-polio syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, staph infections, and sprains and strains just to name a few.
Symptoms of myalgia can vary depending on its location, but the overall symptom experienced in all types of myalgia is pain. Pain can be experienced in the neck, back, in ligaments, and even all over the body as seen in fibromyalgia.
Other symptoms of fibromyalgia include varying levels of pain, headaches, tenderness, irregular heartbeat, nausea and vomiting, fever, anxiety or depression, stiffness, vertigo, as well as numbness and tingling sensations in limbs.
Manage myalgia muscle pain symptoms with these tips
Here are some things you can do in order to better manage myalgia pain symptoms:
Keep a pain diary: Make a note of when you experience pain, how intense it is, and what you were doing prior to experiencing the pain in order to become aware of your triggers and avoid them in the future.
Keep your bowel regular: Constipation is a common side effect for individuals in pain, as they often move less, drink fewer fluids, and take medications that may contribute to constipation, too. Be mindful of your bowel habits. If you’re not going as you should, look to your lifestyle to see if it needs to be altered to improve constipation, such as increasing fiber intake, exercising more, or asking your doctor about medication modifications.
Speak to your doctor about medications that can improve pain: Antibiotics, antidepressants, corticosteroids, and narcotics can all be useful in treating muscle pain. Speak to your doctor prior to beginning any medication regime.
Talk to your doctor about cancer therapies: If you’re on treatment for cancer, this may lead to pain. Speak to your doctor about what can be done to reduce the pain experienced when undergoing cancer treatment.
Home treatments to relieve myalgia muscle pain symptoms
Aside from the pain management tips listed above, there are also home remedies that you can try in order to obtain relief from symptoms brought on by myalgia muscle pain. Home remedies for myalgia include the following:
- Use warm compresses
- Take warm baths
- Try strengthening and flexibility exercises
- Elevate painful areas that may be swollen
- Apply ice to swollen areas
- Take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications
- Try topical gels or creams to relief muscle pain
Your doctor can better make a recovery plan for you depending on the cause of your pain. So whether the pain is brought on by an infection or injury, targeting the underlying cause can better help you get the relief you need and get you back to moving.